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How bad does behaviour have to be in order to obtain a non-molestation order?

Obtaining a non-molestation order does not have a high threshold. Carina Smith explains the threshold to be met to obtain a non-molestation order.

Obtaining a non-molestation order does not have a high threshold.

The current definition of domestic violence now reads:

Any incident or pattern of incidents of controlling, coercive or threatening behaviour, violence or abuse between those aged 16 or over who are or have been intimate partners or family members regardless of gender or sexuality. This can encompass but is not limited to the following types of abuse:

  • psychological
  • physical
  • sexual
  • financial
  • emotional

Controlling behaviour is a range of acts designed to make a person subordinate and/or dependent by isolating them from sources of support, exploiting their resources and capacities for personal gain, depriving them of means needed for independence, resistance and escape and regulating their everyday behaviour.

Coercive behaviour is an act or a pattern of acts of assault, threats, humiliation and intimidation or other abuse that is used to harm, punish or frighten their victim.

Molestation implies some quite deliberate conduct that is aimed at a high degree of harassment of the other partner so as to justify the intervention of the court.

The court has the authority to make either (or both) a non-molestation order or an occupation order without notice. However, it requires exceptional circumstances to deprive a respondent of their home on such a basis.

For further guidance or support in obtaining a non-molestation order, contact our family law solicitors.

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