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Ask A Lawyer- What is Domestic Abuse?

Ask A Lawyer- What is Domestic Abuse?


Mark Peter Savage is a senior solicitor and partner at Anthony King & Co in Basildon, Essex.  Here he advises about some of the signs of abuse and how to recognise and combat them:

There is not, and can never be a good reason for anyone to be abused either physically, or emotionally. Love should come without both pain and fear, if it does not, then there is no love.

What is abuse and what can I do if I suspect I am being abused?

The easy type of abuse to recognise, is the physical abuse. The over restraint, grabbing of wrists, twisting of flesh, but far too often, so much more. The black eyes, threats, unwanted sex, the threats that , ” No one will believe you, you are mad, you will lose the kids, I will report you to social services” All attempts to control you, make you fear, preventing you from acting.

You do not have to tolerate unwanted sexual advances. There is no right to sex in a relationship, rape is non consensual sex. If you are forced to have sex against your will, it is rape. No one owns your body, it is yours, marriage or a long term relationship does not give anyone the right to co trol your body. You have the right to say no, you have the right to report him for rape. Your body, your rights.

There is no such thing as reasonable chastisement in a relationship, it is not your fault if he hits you, spits at you, threatens you. You have a right to be free and safe from physical abuse. He may apologise, say its never happened before, swear he will never lay a hand on you again, and he may not. Why take the risk? Even if you have had an almighty row, no one deserves to be hit, threatened or spat at. Chinese burns are not funny, not part of p!ay, neither is a grab or bruising of flesh, they are criminal assaults, the police should be contacted, you should have him prosecuted. You are entitled to be safe in a relationship, there are different criminal offences for different levels.of assault. Dont be a victim, take back control.

If your partner continues to pester you, sends you abusive texts, makes anonymous phone calls, this is harassment, the police have to act, report it. Do not let them dictate your life, you had the courage to leave them, make sure they get the message, if they harass you, have them prosecuted. It is a criminal offence. No one has the right to dictate your life, you are entitled to be free from control. Report an offence. Nothing is too trivial, or embarassing. I once dealt with a client who thought it appropriate to go to his ex girlfriend’s place of work and throw her panties at her new boyfriend saying, ” these are yours” he did many other things, he went to prison. She got a restraining order, he breached it, he is still in prison.

If your partner tells you what to wear, who you can see, monitors your calls, that is a criminal offence- ‘controlling and coercive behaviour’.  It is your life you live it, no one has the right to dictate to you what you should do, why put up with it? The law is there to help you, use it.

If you get your abuser prosecuted, you can get extra protection from the court by getting a restraining order, it will keep him away from you for a period of up to 5 years, or course civil injunctions are also available, but criminal sanctions are far more effective, and the police listen to victims much more than they used to. Take back control, you have nothing to lose but your shackles.

  1. Thanks for explaining how abusive texts and anonymous phone calls can be grounds for a harassment case. A good friend at work has been continuously pestered by someone from management, and she’s been getting really worried about her safety especially since he tends to call her at the most unusual time of day. I’ll be sure to advise her to look for reputable law firms that can help her file a complaint.

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  3. My daughter was recently a victim of domestic abuse, so I am happy that I read this article. I think that it is nice to know that you can get extra protection from the court by getting a restraining order, as you mentioned. I will talk to my daughter about this, but in the meantime, I will start looking for a domestic violence attorney to help us through this.

  4. I like that you addressed how there are cases of rape in marriages. You should never be forced to do something that you don’t want. If you feel like these things are occurring in your life you should get legal help.

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  11. I like the way you point out the details about the importance of domestic abuse. It will really helpful to all people for involving the best criminal law firms defense lawyer on their case without any hesitation.

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  16. Thanks for the tip that a person that has a partner who tells them what to wear and monitors their calls should use the law to their advantage. With that in mind, I will find a local attorney to help my friend file a divorce and charge her husband this weekend. Doing this will help her get enough compensation to start her sessions with a mental health counselor.

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The Daisy Chain Project

Domestic Abuse Prevention Charity- Legal advice
The Daisy Chain Project
The Daisy Chain Project
Hello all! Just to let you know we are working a little slower than normal due to our recent press coverage- we got an influx!

We have a little queue system in place so please bear with us- we are always happy to help where we can.

We also have recruited at least one, but possibly more, shiny new lawyers!

Stay tuned for more news 🙂
The Daisy Chain Project
The Daisy Chain Project
We’re fresh out of a team briefing at Worthing Job Centre in which we worked with Safe in Sussex to inform the Job Centre Staff about what they can do if they suspect one of their clients is in an abusive relationship.

We were told that with joint claims under Universal Credit, it is unfortunately possible for an abuser to exercise further control over their victim.

We believe education is the key to prevention regarding domestic abuse, and to recognise the signs can lead to early intervention.

If your organisation needs any information or briefings on the law surrounding domestic abuse, please give us a shout- we are more than happy to offer this service!
The Daisy Chain Project
The Daisy Chain Project
Hi all, welcome to the new followers on this sunny day!

A friendly reminder- we will only offer you legal advice if you are the victim of the domestic abuse.

We take this view because we feel it is safer for genuine victims as we cannot prove so that we are sure that another ‘interested’ party won’t jeopardise the case and put the victim in more danger. We will also not divulge any information about any of our clients to anybody who asks us but for in circumstances where the client agrees for us to share information with other services.

If you are concerned about a friend, colleague, or family member, please gently encourage them to contact us for legal advice, or many of the other fabulous organisations out there for more practical advice.

Thank you.
The Daisy Chain Project
The Daisy Chain Project shared a post.
We are thrilled! Thanks so much to the OSPCC!
The Daisy Chain Project
The Daisy Chain Project
Now the election is over we can announce we have received £8,500.00 in funding from National Lottery Awards For All.

This means that we have been able to fund a mobile phone app, which our app designer is currently designing (more on that in the future but we are very excited!)

And another book!

We have MORE news to share very very soon!

Other people in similar situations as us- what do you do if with no notification a client is half an hour late for an appointment? Do you just accept they aren’t coming, try and contact them, or strike them off so they aren’t a client anymore?

Another really positive result for a client today. #wearekeepingyousafe

If you need our assistance, please note that although we can complete things quickly, court the same or next day is something we are unlikely to be able to help with. We always will if we can, but unfortunately due to court deadlines etc it isn’t always possible

Calling all lawyers - want to make a difference and put something back? Please contact @_TDCP_ and volunteer your services to help victims of domestic abuse in Sussex #VolunteersRock

A first in the UK - pro bono legal advice for victims of domestic abuse in Sussex @MoJGovUK @AssocPCCs

Also can we take a moment to appreciate our existing legal team, who are absolutely amazing?! Big love to all of you. Without you, none of this would be possible. Especially @DamianAStuart @MarkPeterSavage @simonspenceQC and Lawrence Watts, whose handle I can’t remember