Communities and Justice

I have assessed my client is at threat of domestic violence, what can I do?

The information in this section applies if a client is assessed to be at threat of domestic violence. There are additional provisions where your client is at serious threat (as set out in a separate section below).

Sharing information where there is a domestic violence threat

  • Purpose of sharing information must be to provide support services (for example, make referrals / direct service provision)
  • Share information initially with the Local Coordination Point or the Central Referral Point (NSW Police and NSW Local Courts), then share information to make further referrals to other services.
  • Information of the victim and/or the perpetrator may be shared
  • Content should be timely, accurate, relevant and secure
  • Victim’s consent must always be sought and obtained (unless you are police or the local court). Consent that is refused or withdrawn must be respected
  • Perpetrator’s consent is not required

Do I need consent to share information when I have assessed my client to be at threat of domestic violence?

Yes. Where you have assessed that there is a domestic violence threat to your client and you want to:

(a) share your client's personal and/or health information to the Central Referral Point (CRP) or Local Coordination Point,

(b) receive referrals from the LCP and make further referrals for support services.

You must seek and obtain your client's consent to share their information (unless you are police or the local court).

You do NOT need the perpetrator's consent to share their information.

Where your client does not give consent to share their information, you cannot share their information under Part 13A or under NSW privacy laws.

For more guidance refer to our consent case examples

For what purpose and with whom can I share information when I have assessed my client to be at threat of domestic violence?

Where you want to make referrals to domestic violence support services or to provide support services

You can only share the information with the Central Referral Point (CRP) or the Local Coordination Point (LCP). This is because when sharing information under Part 13A in order to access domestic violence support services, the information must flow through the LCP.

Under Safer Pathway (PDF, 387.2 KB)Local Coordination Points have been established in some areas in NSW to coordinate domestic violence support services for victim-survivors, and to collect information and make referrals.

The Women's Domestic Violence Court Advocacy Service (WDVCAS) hosts the LCPs for women across NSW, and Victims Services acts as the LCP for all male victims and some female victims.

Where your client is 'at threat' and you want to share information for them to access support services, you must share it initially with the CRP, LCP or a WDVCAS (where Safer Pathway has not yet been rolled out).

Where you have received a referral from an LCP or another service provider that received the information from an LCP under Part 13A, you may make further referrals under Part 13A directly to other domestic violence support services (with your client's consent), and share information about your client and the perpetrator for this purpose.

Where you also want to make other referrals directly to services, you may share your client's information in accordance with NSW privacy laws. These laws mean you must have your client's consent and you must not share the perpetrator's information. This is because the information is no longer shared under Part 13A.

What information can I share when I have assessed my client to be at threat of domestic violence?

You are responsible for decisions about what information you consider necessary to share to make referrals or to provide domestic violence support services to your client.

The information can be about your client and/or the perpetrator.

As a guide, information shared may include, but is not limited to:

  • name, date of birth, gender, address and contact details of your client and the perpetrator
  • relationship to the perpetrator and whether your client is living with the perpetrator
  • whether your client or the perpetrator has or is thought to have any mental illness, disability or drug and alcohol issues
  • injuries resulting from an act of violence
  • Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander background or another cultural background and any cultural needs to facilitate service engagement, such as whether an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander identified person is required to make contact with your client
  • whether your client has any particular requirements to facilitate engagement (e.g. a language interpreter, an Auslan interpreter or a disability support worker)
  • a safe method and time to contact your client
  • the names of any children normally present in your client or the perpetrator's home, their ages and particular needs
  • whether any children have sustained any injuries resulting from an act of violence, and the risk of harm to any children as a result of domestic violence (the  Children and Young Persons (Care and Protection) Act 1998 applies in these circumstances. For more information and guidance refer to the Domestic Violence and Child Protection Guidelines (PDF, 271.1 KB)
  • any recognised risk factors for domestic violence, including copies of any completed risk assessment tools
  • support services currently of previously provided to your client or the perpetrator, any actions taken in relation to threat factors and date of last contact.

Where there are domestic violence proceedings underway, you may also share:

  • administrative details, including date of the domestic violence incident, court file number, court date, and conditions of any ADVO sought or in existence,
  • the grounds of any ADVO applications
  • any previous domestic violence incidents involving either your client or the perpetrator (including where your client was previously a perpetrator and the perpetrator a victim) or the other person at threat, whether the perpetrator has previously breached an ADVO, community-based order or bail, and whether the perpetrator is or at any time was in custody)
  • any police event number, the officer in charge and Local Area Command, nature of any charges, and conditions of any bail conditions sought or in existence.

Last updated:

19 Sep 2023