Unfortunately, there can be situations where a partner has behaved abusively or violently and the law recognises the need to protect victims of such abuse. In Northern Ireland, the Family Homes and Domestic Violence (Northern Ireland) Order 1998 sets out the legal positon. A victim of domestic abuse, be it physical or mental abuse, can apply for a non-molestation order. This is an order prohibiting a person from molesting another person. If they contravene the order they are committing a criminal offence and could be subject to arrest. The application for an order can be made on what is known as an ex parte basis. This means that the person against whom the order is sought is not aware that the application has been made and will not know about it until the police serve any order granted against them.
If you require a non-molestation order as a matter of urgency we pledge to see you that day and will prioritise your application for an order as we recognise the importance of obtaining an immediate order in such circumstances.
The law also recognises the need to protect victims of domestic violence by the provision of financial assistance to those applying for a non-molestation order but whose income or savings exceeds legal aid limits. Under the Financial Assessment DV Scheme commenced in April 2015, if a person has capital in excess of £3000 a one off contribution of £100 is paid. If their disposable income exceeds the present limit of £234 per week, the contribution payable shall be the excess plus £134 (the current maximum contribution). All other legal costs are paid by the Legal Service Agency.
Please speak to one of our solicitors for detailed advice and assistance on these matters.