- Domestic Violence and stalking has a devastating effect on its victims and can lead to murder.
- 2 women a week in the UK are killed by their current or former partners an incident of DV is reported to the police every minute.
- DV costs England and Wales an estimated £23 billion per annum
Director Rachel Horman heads up one of the only departments of its kind in the North of England.
The Domestic Violence, Stalking and Forced Marriage department contains specialist advisors who enable victims of domestic abuse to receive expert advice that many clients have expressed has “ saved their lives”. Rachel received the National Family Legal Aid Lawyer of the year award in 2012 and has been Shortlisted for Jordan’s National Family Partner 2014 in recognition of the ground breaking work of the department in this area. (See here for Rachel’s full profile). Rachel and several other members of the department are Resolution Accredited Specialists in the field of Domestic Abuse and Forced marriage and Honour Based Violence. Domestic violence includes physical, psychological, sexual, financial and coercive control.
The Government definition of domestic violence 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 can encompass but is not limited to the following types of abuse:
Psychological, physical, sexual, financial and emotional.
Controlling behaviour is:
A range of acts designed to make a person subordinate and/or dependant by isolating them from sources of support, exploiting their resources and capabilities for financial gain, depriving them of the means needed for independence, resistance and escape and regulating their everyday behaviour.
Coercive Behaviour is:
An act or pattern of acts of assaults, threats, humiliation and intimidation or other abuse that is used to harm, punish or frighten the victim. This behaviour includes “honour” based violence, female genital mutilation and forced marriage.
Many victims of domestic violence are also abused after separation which may be classed by the police as Stalking (click here for more information)
The domestic violence department will ensure that you are seen straight away without the need to wait for an appointment if your situation is urgent. In urgent cases we will also endeavour to get you into Court within 24 hours to obtain the necessary protective Orders for yourself and your children.
These are also known as injunctions and can prevent the perpetrator from contacting you in any way – in person, by letter, by text, by social media and through 3rd parties. The Orders will also prohibit the use of or threat of violence and can even prevent the perpetrator form approaching your house or place of work. Occasionally the Non Molestation Orders will also cover the children.
Non Molestation Orders can be made against your partner, former partner or family relatives.
These Orders can be obtained within 24 hours (subject to legal aid requirements if appropriate) and after having been served on the perpetrator are also lodged with the police as breach of a Non Molestation Order is now a criminal offence punishable with up to 5 years imprisonment.
If you have been a victim of physical abuse from your partner then you may be entitled to make a criminal injuries claim.
For more information regarding domestic violence related issues – see the Domestic Abuse Lawyer Blog written by Rachel Horman
Local Support Organisations :
Blackburn, Darwen & District Without Abuse – Helpline: 0845 0777 088 (Mon-Fri 9-5pm)
Fylde Coast Women’s Aid – Helpline: 01253 596699 Mon-Fri: 9.30am – 9.30pm, Sat -Sun: 12 noon – 9.30pm
Hyndburn and Ribble Valley (HARV) Domestic Violence Team – Helpline: 01254 879855
Rossendale Star Centre – Helpline: 01706 830600
SafeNet Burnley & Lancaster – Helpline: 07866 510 728 (Mon–Fri 10am-5pm)
Trafford Domestic Abuse Services (TDAS) – Helpline: 0845 241 1117 (Mon–Fri 10am-4pm)