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Yes, but I am thinking of the first 48 hours, not afterwards when I go to court and say, "Thank God, I've come before a tribunal. I've had two days out of my house with nowhere to go." That is a serious thing to do on the say-so of a policeman and no other tribunal. It is a worry.
Oddly enough, the domestic violence protection notice "must" say that the application for the domestic violence protection order
"will be heard within 48 hours".
Now that is a funny one. Picture the scene: it is a Friday night, and there is possible violence. By some miracle, the constable has whipped round to the house, seen what is going on, found a superintendent, got a DVPN and filled out the paperwork; it is probably Saturday lunch time by now. He whizzes round and serves the domestic violence protection notice on me, the perpetrator. Will it be heard within 48 hours? I do not see how a substantive hearing can take place within 48 hours. An interim hearing might, but we do not talk about interim hearings here. Frankly, most courts would want a little help and evidence when they first come to hear the case.
Imagine insisting that the magistrates court hear the application on the Monday morning. It is not possible. The courts will not do it. How could they? They are so clogged up and busy. They will say, "Come Wednesday." "I'm sorry, the notice says it must be heard." In goes the defendant, as I call him; it could be me. "Can I have my solicitor present? I wish to object. Am I denied my lawyer, or can I go get him for tomorrow or the next day?" A hearing within 48 hours is difficult.
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