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domestic violence – what can I do to be safe

What Can I Do To Be Safe from Domestic Violence?

If you are considering leaving a violent relationship, you will be concerned about what will happen once you leave and what steps you can take to protect yourself afterwards. You will probably be concerned about what the other party may try to do to retaliate against you. These are normal concerns of our clients and questions that we often face. Experience shows that once you start the process of obtaining the protection of the courts, a previously violent partner will usually start to back off, not least because the protection afforded by the courts in domestic violence situations is real. However; in addition to the protection that the court will offer you, there are many other measures you can take to help protect yourself. We have listed below a few of your options:

Get an Injunction or Non-Molestation Order

Obtaining a non-molestation order should be the first thing you do to help you get out of a violent relationship. Although an injunction cannot physically protect you, your ex-partner will be arrested if they violate the order. Depending on what they try to do, they can face a significant custodial sentence. A non-molestation order can also prevent your ex-partner from contacting you or coming within a defined distance of your new home. In many instances where you decide to leave the property that you shared with that person, the court will also protect your new address from being disclosed to your ex-partner and can also make an Order preventing that person from going near the childrens schools or your work place.

Learn Self-Confidence & Self-Defence

Victims of domestic violence often lack self-esteem due to the abise that they have suffered. Learning to have confidence in yourself will help you stand up for yourself if the other party finds and confronts you. Learning self-defence is an excellent self-confidence booster. Also invest in a can of pepper spray. Always make sure that your mobile phone is fully charged and has sufficient credit when you are going out or home alone and keep all doors and windows locked at all times, day and night. Find a local counselling service and attend the meetings. They can do wonders to help boost your morale. Most important of all, never shy away from calling the police if you have any concerns. The police take domestic violence very seriously and will never treat a domestic violence call lightly. They know how frightened you will be and they also know how real the dangers can be for partners leaving a violent relationship. If you can’t learn self-defence because you are too frail or old, think about getting a dog. You would be surprised how many people are frightened of dogs.

Find A Roommate

If you have recently left a violent relationship, ask a friend to share a new home with you as a room or flat mate. Alternatively go and stay with family for a while. This will deter the other party from coming to your new home. If you do choose to get a roommate, then it is only fair to let them know your situation beforehand.

Change your Passwords

contact your bank and change your account passwords immediately. Do the same with your email account and all other things that you have passwords for. Your ex-partner will usually either know your passwords or be able to guess them. They will try to hack into your email account or Facebook or Twitter profile and they will take great pleasure at spilling out your personal information for the world to see. Take precautions and change all passwords to safe and difficultto guess passwords. Use a combination of words and numbers and do not use easy to guess numbers like dates of birth or speacial occasion dates. Inform your mobile and home phone network providersthat you have a violent ex-partner and place the accounts on high security with new passwords. Do the same with your savings account, PEP’s, ISA’s and anything else that you think your ex may try to ‘get at’.

Move Away From The Area

Moving to another area will help to deter your ex-partner from finding you. The further away you move, the least likely it will be that they will be able to find you. Try not to leave any forwarding address with the post office for your mail and asking family and friends not to reveal your whereabouts to your ex. Moving might be a difficult option if you are particularly closely connected to the area where you currently live. However, it may also be the perfect opportunity to start a new life for yourself somewhere new. The court will also help in keeping your new address secret from your ex-partner and in addition when attending court we always provide our domestic violence clients with a male chaparone to and from the court and where necessary we will also provide you with transport facilities so that your ex-partner or one of their friends cannot trace your movements.

Tell the Police

We will always notify your local police station as soon we obtain a non-molestation order on your behalf from the court. The police have systems where they record this type of information on a central computer and they will make sure that police officers monitor your address more closely and regularly pass by on their rounds to keep an eye on things. They will also add your phone number and address to a database that alerts them of the existence of the non-molestation order in the event that you should ever need to call them.

Change your Habits

A violent ex-partner will usually know a lot about you and your habits. They will know what you like doing and where you like going. They will also know what your movements usually are and where you can be expected to be. At times like this it is good idea to change your habits entirely. Stop visiting the usual old haunts and don’t take the usual route to and from work. Park your car in a different place, travel at different times and try to avoid quiet places. Tell your employers about your problem and you will usually find that they are more than happy to accommodate you. Tell a trusted friend at work and ask them to chaparone you to and from your car or the railway station. Try to stay in groups when you are out. You will not need to stick with your new routine indefinitely! Almost all violent ex-patners eventually get the message from the court that they cannot try to communicate withyou. In our experience these types of people are usually cowards why prey on people weaker than themselves. Once confronted by the law and the courts they almost always pull themselves together and back off! However; getting out of a violent relationship does need you to be cautious, at least for a while.

These are just a few of the many steps you can take to help protect yourself when leaving a domestic violence relationship. The most important thing is that you know how far your ex-partner will go and you therefore need to plan accordingly. The more extreme you feel your ex-partner will act about you leaving, the more extensive measures you will need to take to keep yourself safe.

Call the Experts

Call us on 020 8401 7352 as soon as think that you are ready to start the process of protecting yourself and getting out of a Domestic Violence relationship. We are not just experts at the law. We are experts at listening to you, understanding your needs and concerns and, above all at helping you regain your life after separation. We have helped hundreds of people through the process and will do everything possible to guide you through, safely and, confident that you have the best possible legal team acting for you. We will defend your position and safety at court and will invite the court to impose the toughest possible conditions on your ex. We have no compassion for violent partners and will ensure that they are prosecuted to the full extent of the law. Domestic Violence is inexcusable and unjustifiable.

We offer a free 30 minute telephone consultation to help you decide what you want to do and what is best for you. Call us today on 020 8401 7352