Legal Aid remains available where you seek protection after being a victim of domestic violence and want to stay or indeed remain in your home without being terrorised.
You do NOT have to provide formal evidence of violence for legal aid, although this should not be confused with other proceedings such as divorce, where formal evidence of violence will need to be produced.
Legal Aid will though always remain subject to financial eligibility.
We work very closely with Women’s Aid in Cardiff, frequently providing pro bono advice sessions at their offices and indeed work closely with BAWSO to help protect the vulnerable, who are usually the targets of extreme emotional abuse and indeed direct violence.
In our experience BAWSO provide huge support to families in Cardiff and can also help with arranging appropriate interpreters
Sometimes it is inevitable that an application be made to the family court to protect both parent and child/children.
Senior Family Court Judges oversee all applications that are made to the family court and ensure the interests and indeed safety of the children remain paramount. It is however critically important to seek appropriate legal advice and support for the family as soon as there are serious concerns.
The Cycle of Domestic violence can sadly begin at any stage of the relationship and may continue once the relationship is ended.
It may take many forms, physical violence, bullying, threats, intimidation, verbal or mental abuse or extreme humiliation. There are no class or gender barriers, it happens in affluent as well as disadvantaged families and it happens to men as well as, more usually, exceptionally vulnerable women or children.
Domestic violence can arise in other family relationships as well as it cuts across all boundaries of age, race, disability, sexual orientation and lifestyle.
In the first instance you should always consider advising and fully reporting any relevant incident to the police, as in addition to criminal remedies, this is likely to assist and support your civil claims and your civil rights of protection. The Main Civil remedies are:-
Non Molestation Order
This is put in place to stop your spouse or former partner from harassing you or threatening to use violence against you or your child. This is commonly called an Injunction or order Against Harassment.
This enables you to achieve or regain occupation of your home via the exclusion of a spouse or former partner. The Court, however, expect action to be taken quite quickly from the events which are complained of and so you need to come and see us urgently ideally within 24 hours if you are experiencing any form of violence in your home.
If a Non Molestation Order is broken, this is in fact a criminal offence and the police have the power to arrest a perpetrator simply for breaking the Order and bring them before the Court.
An Occupation Order can have a Power of Arrest attached to it, allowing a Police Officer to arrest an opponent for breaking or breaching the Order. The Legal Services Commission now view these cases as a priority so Emergency Legal Aid or Public Funding cam be available to meet legal costs.
If you do not qualify for public funding as you do not meet the financial criteria, you may still need the full protection of the law and indeed of the Family Court.
You can contact us for a consultation on the most cost effective way to progress matters privately and we are usually able to offer attractive agreed fees as well as support on ways in which to obtain funding for what we understand is likely to be a crisis funding.
With any issues or problems with Domestic Violence or Abuse contact our Specialists;
Contact our Jane Williams for urgent assistance at our Churchill Way offices or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.