Julian Coleman v Jolanda Todaro [2016] NZFC 860

Published 31 July 2016

Domestic violence — final protection order — Domestic Violence Act 1995, ss 3, 14. An application for a final protection order was dismissed and the existing temporary order discharged. In determining whether to make the final order, the Judge pursuant to s 14 firstly had to determine whether domestic violence had occurred, and then whether the making of the order was necessary for the protection of the applicant, the applicant’s children, or both. Instances of domestic violence by the respondent were found to have occurred, yet these needed to be seen in the context of a dysfunctional and failing relationship where the applicant’s behaviour could be “described as manipulative, controlling and insidious.” The granting of an order does not automatically follow the finding of domestic violence however, and upon examination of the evidence the Judge determined it was not necessary under s 14 of the Act to grant a final protection order. The conduct of the applicant did not lend itself to a finding of that party being in fear of the respondent, and no ongoing risks were determined for the applicant or the children since the relationship had ended. **Note: names have been changed to comply with legal requirements.