Introduction to domestic abuse and harassment
All couples argue at various points during their relationship. Arguments can become especially unpleasant when it is clear that the relationship is coming to an end. For some couples these arguments can lead to incidents of domestic violence. The government’s current definition of domestic abuse is “any incident or pattern of incidents of controlling, coercive or threatening behaviour, violence or abuse between those aged 16 or over who are or have been intimate partners or family members regardless of gender or sexuality”. This includes but is not limited to psychological, physical, sexual, financial and emotional abuse.
The law seeks to protect those people who find themselves in situations where they are subjected to such abuse. The family courts have the ability to make non-molestation and occupation orders.
An occupation order regulates the parties’ use of a property. Commonly they will exclude one party from entering a property but can also allow one party to use a property in which they may not have a legal interest. It may also include dividing the property so that the parties have a designated area each.
Non-molestation orders can be made between two people who are or have been in a relationship or are related. A non-molestation order will generally prevent one party attending a particular location such as a residential property and prohibit them from contacting the applicant. Where the parties are living together at the time of the application, the application will commonly be made in conjunction with an application for an occupation order.
If you are subjected to the use or threat of physical violence you should contact the police immediately.
The first step is to arrange a meeting with one of our solicitors. Therefore, please call us on 020 7404 9390 or email us to make an appointment to come and see us.