Domestic abuse is when someone close to you, often your spouse or partner, causes you physical, social, mental, financial or emotional harm. The violence and abuse can be actual or threatened and can happen once every so often or on a regular basis.
Domestic abuse can often, but not always, be categorised as one of the following:
- Physical, sexual, emotional or psychological abuse
- Financial abuse and social isolation
- Threatening or controlling behaviour
Any type of relationship may experience abuse of this nature, regardless of class, age, race, disability, sexuality or lifestyle. The abuse can begin at any time – in new relationships or after many years spent together.
Domestic violence can affect children, both in the short and the long term and in some cases the children may be the victims of the violence themselves. Many years of research has shown that it is not only women and children that are at risk of abuse but also men.
All forms of abuse are frightening for the victim. It is a sad reality that many people put up with domestic violence, often for years on end. Most victims tend to suffer in silence, either because they feel ashamed or frightened of the consequences of seeking help even though it is not their fault. Some people try to justify the reasons for their partners behaviour and only seek help and protection after years of abuse.
All too often the abuse is accompanied by threats against the victim, especially threatening further and harsher abuse or violence if the victim tries to seek professional help or call the police.
If you are suffering abuse the law is there to protect you. Our experience is that if problems of abuse are tackled in a positive and sensitive manner then it is often possible to improve what is otherwise a desperate situation for the victim. There are many organisations who can provide practical help and support, such as somewhere safe to stay or counselling.
Why choose us?
Our understanding and approachable family legal team have extensive knowledge on such matters and are experienced in dealing with clients who have experienced all types of abuse. We can act very quickly to protect you, under the strictest confidence. If you are unsure about your rights and how best to protect yourself, then contact us by – we will respect your privacy and the need for complete confidentiality.
Legal aid may still be available for cases involving domestic abuse and we can help you apply if this applies to you.
Please get in touch:
Email: FamilyLaw@gilbertstephens.co.uk or contact one of our team.