Ask any solicitor and they will agree that domestic violence cases can be one of the most stressful and challenging ordeals a person can face. The term domestic violence is defined as threatening, violent or abusive behavior, often used by a person to control a partner or family member.
Domestic violence can happen to anyone regardless of gender, sexuality or age. Unfortunately, Northern Ireland has seen an increase in domestic violence cases in recent years, with the PSNI reporting that there were 31,298 domestic abuse incidents across the country in 2018.
Whilst every case is different, it is important to note some key points when pursuing a domestic violence case.
Reporting the Abuse
We know it is easier said than done, but for your own safety, it is important that you report domestic violence to the police. If you don’t feel that you are in the position to report it, there are other organisations who you can contact who will provide support and advice. These include the Domestic and Sexual Abuse Helpline, Women’s Aid or Refuge.
Where possible, we would advise that you try to gather as much evidence as you can. On occasions, cases have been dropped due to insufficient evidence therefore, possessing any form of evidence will strengthen your case. This may be in the form of a letter from the police, a medical professional or domestic violence support centre. If you require Legal Aid, this evidence will also support your claim.
There are a number of solutions which may be beneficial to your situation such as applying for a court order to protect you from violence or harassment (non-molestation order), applying for a court order to stop your partner entering your home (occupation order), resolving financial issues and take legal action. However, it is important to discuss these options with a legal expert who will have the expertise to advise on the best solution.
At H McPartland & Sons, we understand that this can be an extremely upsetting time for all parties involved, but we can assure you that you will be supported at every step of the process. Contact us today to speak with one of our experienced solicitors, who will advise you on pursuing a domestic violence case. We will also provide one on one professional service and guide you through this difficult process.