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My partner has threatened or abused me/my child. What can I do to protect us?

If you believe you are suffering domestic abuse then you have a number of remedies available to you under both criminal and civil law. Because it falls under criminal law you can go to the police for immediate help and you should do this immediately if you believe you or your children are in danger.

You can also go to court and apply for an occupation order, something which will stop the abuser entering your family home and the area around it. This can be invaluable if you want to go back to your family home but do not want the abuser there. In certain circumstances an occupation order can also allow you to use a property in which you don’t have a legal interest. Your partner could be arrested if they breach the order and a power of arrest is attached to it.

You could also go to court and apply for a non-molestation order which will enable you to prevent the abuser threatening you or your child. This will generally stop your abuser from contacting you or going to a particular location. It is common for this order to be used together with the occupation order. If your abuser breaches your non-molestation order then this is now a criminal offence and they can be arrested for this immediately.

If the danger towards you is thought to be immediate in nature then an application can be made to court immediately (on the same day). In this case your abuser won’t need to be there.

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