What Are Non-molestation Orders?
A non-molestation order is a civil court order (made under The Family Law Act 1996) which is meant to protect the victims of domestic violence from their abusers. This can not only prevent physical violence, but also bullying, threatening, and psychological abuse. Anyone found to have broken the order can face up to five years in prison.
There are certain circumstances in which someone can apply for such an order. These are:
• The abuser is associated with the victim either through marriage, civil partnership, or an engagement which would have led to marriage.
• The abuser and the victim have been living together (including same sex relationships)
• The abuser is a family member or relation of the victim
• The abuser is someone you share a child with (or someone with parental responsibility for your child)
• The abuser is someone with whom the victim had a significant intimate long term relationship
Non-molestation orders are generally made for a set period of time, but can be renewed should they need to be. There are no limits to the number of times that an order can be renewed, or how long they are set in place for originally. They can even be applied for ‘without notice’ should you feel that you or your children are in immediate danger and require protection.
Non-molestation orders can also protect property. This could be useful if the victim and abuser were sharing a home, and the victim leaves because of the violence, but cannot take many possessions with them. It will give the victim peace of mind that their possessions will be safe or, if they are not, that the abuser will certainly find themselves arrested and potentially jailed.
If you need to discuss non-molestation orders, if you’re not sure whether you need one or would be awarded one, please contact us immediately.