Our Family Team offers sympathetic support and we have two solicitors who undertook Resolution Specialist Accreditation in Domestic Abuse cases.
Call our Family Team on 01642 293427 to make an initial enquiry, or you can also fill in our Contact Form. Please provide a contact number so that we can call you at a convenient time to take the necessary details of your case. We will not use your number to pressure you into instructing the firm; you are of course free to choose which solicitors firm you wish to represent you. We offer free initial consultations with no obligation to proceed further.
Domestic violence is currently defined as:-
‘Any incident of threatening behaviour, violence or abuse between adults who are, or who have been, in a relationship, or between family members. It can affect anyone regardless of his or her gender or sexuality. The violence can be psychological, physical, sexual, or emotional.’
This includes issues of concern to black and minority ethnic (BME) communities such as so called ‘honour’ based violence, female genital mutilation (FGM) and forced marriage, and is clear that victims are not confined to one gender or ethnic group.
One in four women experience domestic violence over their lifetimes and between 6-10% of women suffer domestic violence in a given year (Council of Europe, 2002).
Domestic violence has the highest rate of repeat victimisation of any other crime type. Seventy three per cent of incidents of domestic violence were experienced by repeat victims, and of the victims interviewed, just under half were victimised more than once, and nearly one quarter were victimised three or more times. (British Crime Survey, 2010/11)
On average, two women a week are killed by a violent partner or ex-partner, which constitutes nearly 40% of all female homicide victims. (Povey, (ed.), 2005; Home Office, 1999; Department of Health, 2005.)
There is often stigma attached to domestic violence; people still think it is something that happens between a man and a woman, behind closed doors, when things get out of hand and he hits her. In some cases this does happen, but in others the circumstances can be very different.
‘Domestic Violence’ or ‘Domestic Abuse’ can take many different forms. The only definition that should be used is one that answers yes to the following questions; Do you, the victim, feel scared? Or are you suffering at the hands of another person? If the answers are yes then you should seek help and support, because you may be entitled to an injunction (also known as a ‘Non-Molestation Order or an Occupation Order’).
Some common examples of domestic abuse could be;
· A physical assault; hit, slap, punch, push or kick;
· Emotional abuse; name calling, negative remarks or threats;
· Controlling behaviour; stopping you seeing family and friends, controlling your money or isolating you from social events.
Some people also believe that domestic abuse only happens between man and wife. This is not true; many people can be entitled to an injunction (or ‘Non-Molestation Order or an Occupation Order’), including;
You may be entitled to an injunction. This will protect you and can also protect your children and your home.
An injunction can be called two different things;
A Non-Molestation Order is an injunction that could protect you and your children.
The order is granted by the court and can include preventing the perpetrator (person committing the abuse) from threatening, harassing or pestering you or from using violence against you.
An Occupation Order is an order for your home. This can prevent the perpetrator from entering or re-entering your home. This can, in some cases, cover homes that you own or live in jointly. In some cases the court can also order the perpetrator to offer you financial help with a mortgage. This is useful in cases where the perpetrator is the main earner in the family.
In urgent cases you can make an application to the court for protection without notice to the perpetrator. This means that they will not be at court. We can make this application within 24 hours in urgent cases.
We can help you to obtain an injunction and can offer legal aid for those who qualify financially.
The support available for domestic abuse;-
A legal order is the best offer of protection and safety from domestic abuse for you and your family, but when you have suffered or are suffering domestic abuse then you will need and should get help and support as quickly as possible.
Often you may find it hard to speak to family or friends about what has happened or is happening, but you can get help elsewhere.
We are lucky in the Teesside area that we have many domestic abuse organisations who can offer counselling, help and support. They offer their services in confidence and can be very discreet. Other services can include looking into your home and safety mechanisms to ensure that your home is safe and secure, and help in relation to children and how to move forward.
Please see the details below for;
My Sisters’ Place;-
It is also very important that you contact the police. They can also offer lots of help and assistance. If a criminal offence has taken place the police will take action and if not then the incident will be logged on a police computer this is also very important and can be used as evidence if a further incident happens.
The contact details for Cleveland Police are;-
We can help you to obtain an injunction and can offer legal aid for those who qualify financially. Contact our Family Team for sympathetic legal advice and support. Our advisors are very experienced in domestic abuse cases and will deal with your case with the utmost sensitivity.