Protection from Domestic Abuse: Can I obtain an injunction?
Non-molestation orders are a common type of injunction that can protect victims of domestic abuse. The order prohibits a person (the respondent) from molesting another person, i.e the applicant or their child.
The types of behaviour that can be prohibited are wide. They can prohibit the respondent from contacting the applicant, or visiting the applicant’s property, or visiting within a certain radius of the applicant’s home or child’s school. They can prevent the respondent from texting the applicant or their family members, and so forth.
The scope of a non-molestation order can therefore be wide and can be drafted to suit the particular case.
The respondent commits a criminal offence if they breach the terms of a non-molestation order without reasonable excuse.
There are restrictions on who can apply for a non-molestation order under the Family Law Act. The applicant and the respondent must be ‘associated’ by either:
- Being married
- Being cohabitees
- Being relatives
- Being engaged
- Being in an intimate personal relationship that was of a significant duration
The person applying to court for the injunction must complete a form and a witness statement setting out in detail what has taken place. Although usually the other person is told if a court application is made against them, the application can be made without notice to the other party if the court considers the applicant’s safety is at risk.
The respondent will be given the opportunity to respond to the allegations at a contested hearing at a later date.
If you would like any further information or advice in relation to Non-Molestation Orders, please contact our specialist family lawyers: Mark Vandaele on 01902 796930 (email@example.com) at our Wolverhampton office or Rachel Baker on 01384 340 580 (firstname.lastname@example.org) at our Cradley Heath office.