A call out order is made by the Governor-General if the Prime Minister, the Minister and the Attorney-General (who are called the authorising Ministers) are satisfied of various matters.
There are 2 general kinds of call out orders: Commonwealth interests orders and State protection orders. For both kinds of call out orders, the Defence Force can be called out immediately or, under a contingent call out order, if specified circumstances arise.
Under a Commonwealth interests order, the Defence Force is called out to protect Commonwealth interests in Australia or the Australian offshore area. The order might apply in a State or Territory, or in the Australian offshore area, or in more than one of those places. Each State or self-governing Territory in which domestic violence is occurring, or is likely to, would or would be likely to occur, must generally be consulted before the Governor-General makes a Commonwealth interests order.
A State or self-governing Territory can apply for a State protection order to protect the State or Territory from domestic violence.
A power under a call out order may be exercised in a State or Territory either because the State or Territory is specified in the order or because the power is exercised in the State or Territory for a purpose specified in the order.
As far as reasonably practicable, the Chief of the Defence Force must assist, and cooperate with the police force of, a State or Territory that is affected by a call out of the Defence Force.