Jarod Sherman v Alex Bristol (deceased) [2016] NZFC 2324

Published 31 July 2016

Application for discharge of protection order — domestic violence — psychological abuse — Domestic Violence Act, ss 16, 47 — Care of Children Act 2004. An application by the father to discharge a protection order made in favour of the respondent (his deceased partner) and their children was declined. The Judge found that the protected persons had a reasonable fear of the applicant and that it was necessary the order remain in force; it was found, on the balance of probabilities, that psychological damage to the protected persons would occur if the order was removed. Until her death in 2012, the children had been in their mother’s day-to-day care and had limited contact with the applicant. Their aunt, who was named testamentary guardian in the mother’s will, had a final parenting order made in her favour in 2015 which provided for supervised contact with the father. The father argued that the deceased respondent had agreed to him having unsupervised contact after the protection order was made, although that party’s dishonesty, lack of insight into the harm of his own behaviour, and refusal to accept counselling made discharge of the protection order inappropriate. **Note: names have been changed to comply with legal requirements.