The new Domestic Abuse Bill became law in April 2021. It was intended that this new law would give further protections to the millions of people who experience domestic abuse and strengthen measures to tackle perpetrators.
Recently figures published by Women's Aid indicated that 1 in 3 women and 1 in 4 men are victims of domestic abuse within a relationship. A recent alleged high profile incident showed that abuse is still happening and has brought the subject back into the news once again, However, it has also shown that attitudes are changing and it is no longer acceptable.
To support this new law Police have been given new powers which include Domestic Abuse Protection Notices. These will give victims immediate protection from abusers.
It is important to understand that abuse takes many different forms and not all abuse is physical. Examples include:
- Psychological abuse
- Economic abuse (controlling finances leaving you with no access to money)
- Sexual abuse
- Coercive control (Controlling behaviour)
- Physical abuse
- Tech abuse (Controlling your access to devices, abusive texts, tracking or spyware and sharing images of you without your permission
Courts are able to give Domestic Abuse Protection Orders which force perpetrators to take steps to change their behaviour such as seeking mental health support or addiction rehabilitation.
Protective measures for victims when cases do go to court include abusers no longer being allowed to directly cross-examine their victims and preventing intimidation by providing protective screens and giving evidence via video link.
Policing alone cannot solve domestic abuse but requires organisations and authorities to work together including education, probation, health, social care and housing to ensure support to victims is immediate.
A number of organisations can offer immediate support and advice including Refuge, Women's Aid and The Men’s Advice Line details of which can be found at https://www.gov.uk/guidance/domestic-abuse-how-to-get-help
Spectrum Family Law will advise you of the options available to you and, if applicable, your children. Injunction proceedings and Non-Molestation orders can be issued swiftly, depending on the circumstances of your case, to provide you with the protection of the court. A breach of these orders can result in imprisonment for the perpetrator.
It may be that proceedings will be issued by the police, including harassment proceedings, which will save you a great deal of time and cost. In cases where the victim of abuse is financially dependent on the abusing party, we can advise you of the law and your rights. Every case is different, but a victim cannot be expected to stay in a violent environment due to financial constraints. As experienced solicitors, we can advise you of the best course of action to take.
Any injunction is intended to be an emergency solution and can be limited in time but for a sufficient length of time to allow the situation to calm.
Telephone 01279 799598 or email email@example.com for further advice.
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