Domestic violence is the pattern of controlling and aggressive behaviour from one person towards another within the contact of an intimate relationship.
It can happen to anyone in all kinds of relationships. People suffer domestic violence regardless of their class, age, race, disability, sexuality, gender or lifestyle. The abuse can start at any time.
Domestic violence can be: physical, sexual, psychological, emotional, financial or social isolation.
- Using emotional abuse - calling you names, playing mind games, and humiliating you
- Isolation - controlling who you see and what you do
- Using children - threatening to take the children away to hurt them
- Using power and control
- Using economic control - preventing you from getting a job, controlling the amount of money you have
What To Do
If you are experiencing domestic violence you should:
- Make a safety plan and prepare to leave. There are lots of organisations who can help you.
- Seek advice within 3 weeks of any incident. It is harder to prove you received injuries after this time
- Report incident to the police. They are specially trained and are used to helping people who are suffering domestic violence.
- Keep a detailed record of what is happening. Record details of when, where, what, injuries received etc
- Get legal help. We will try to see you as soon as possible, sometimes on the same day and see if you are eligible for Legal Aid.
How Much Will A Solicitor Cost?
Domestic violence cases can often receive Legal Aid. We will check to see if you are applicable for Legal Aid at your initial meeting and will help you to fill out the relevant forms and paperwork. If you are not eligible for Legal Aid, we offer a number of family fixed fee packages; to help you control your costs.
What Happens When You Seek Legal Help?
Your solicitor can:
- Send a warning letter (for all types of abuse)
- If warning letter ignored, possibly start injunction proceedings
What Is An Injunction?
An injunction can prevent threats or use of violence, harassment and pestering. For example, it may forbid an ex-partner from making contact with their former partner, or from coming within a certain distance from the home.
If the Injunction is breached, the perpetrator (attacker) can be arrested with a warrant, and brought to the court within 24 hours.
Emergency injunction – your solicitor may be able to get an emergency injunction within 48 hours of reporting the incident. The perpetrator (attacker) will not be present at court.
What About The Children?
Often people stay with their partner because they are worried about what will happen to the children. You don’t have to leave your children behind, they can go with you to a refuge.
Remember - You Are Not Alone
- Police – dial 101 for non-emergencies or 999 in an emergency
- Social Services - Intakes and Assessment Peterborough 01733 746016 / Stamford 01780 754533
- Women’s Aid - Freephone 24 hour National Domestic Violence Helpline 0808 2000 247
- Peterborough Women’s Centre - 01733 311564 or 01733 311568
- Housing - 01733 563141
- The Samaritans - 08457 909090
- Talktime - support for children aged 6 to 19 who are experiencing parental conflict - 01733 568281
- Victim Support - 01733 349897