Our Middlesbrough Solicitors write about domestic violence and domestic abuse;-

The facts about domestic abuse:

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.)

The reality

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 answeres 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;

  • Husband and wife;
  • Civil partners;
  • Cohabiting couples;
  • Non-cohabiting couples;
  • Same sex couples;
  • Parents and children (some circumstances/some orders are available);
  • Brothers and sisters (some circumstances/some orders are available);
  • Other family members (some circumstances/some orders are available).

The help for domestic abuse available to you

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;

an Occupation Order.

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.

Legal aid is available to help victims of domestic abuse and you may be entitled to funding.

We can help you to obtain an injunction and can offer legal aid for those who qualify financially. Contact our Domestic Abuse Solicitors.

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 

My Sisters Place is an independent specialist ‘One Stop Shop’ for women aged 16 or over have experienced or are experiencing domestic violence.

Halo Project

 The Halo Project is a new and innovative project based in the North East of England, which will support victims of honour based violence and forced marriages by providing appropriate advice and support to victims. The programme of work with key partners will also provide required interventions and advice necessary for the protection and safety of victims.


Telephone: 03000 20 25 25     Facebook page: www.facebook.com/harboursupportservices

Harbour is the main provider of services for those living with domestic abuse in Stockton-on-Tees.

The organisation offers support to individuals and families by providing safe accommodation in the refuge and practical support in the community to women, men and children, including a range of group programmes.

Harbour also offers services to those who perpetrate abuse but want to change their behaviour.

For those who have experienced sexual violence, Harbour can provide a counselling service, with both individual and group support.

Harbour can also provide advice to those worried about a friend or relative who they believe may be in an abusive relationship.

The Angelou Centre 

A black led women’s organisation, was established in 1993 to advance economic independence for women who are excluded due to disadvantages of race and gender. Over 21 years it has demonstrated success in: levering resources to engage hard to reach and excluded women; providing specialist domestic abuse services for BME women; flexibility and responsiveness in developing projects and services to meet the needs of beneficiaries; identifying innovative projects for economic inclusion and engagement; undertaking research and development work in promoting leadership and representation for women; building social capital through extending women’s social networks and volunteer engagement.

For further information or enquiries please contact: 0191 226 0394 or email:admin@angelou-centre.org.uk.

Women’s Aid;-


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. 

If you would like legal advice or help with your case, please contact our Family Solicitors for specialist advice and support.  You can contact us by completing our contact form and requesting a call back, calling us on 01642 293427 or sending a private message to us via our Facebook page, which is monitored daily. 

We work hard to get the best results possible for our clients – read our testimonials.