"Anyone suffering from domestic abuse should rest assured that normal court proceedings are still available and can be enforced by the police if required."
Current government guidelines require people to work from home where possible, including solicitors and judges, with court proceedings taking place via video conference calls.
The National Domestic Abuse helpline has seen a 25 per cent increase in requests for help since the lockdown, with concerns that this will continue to grow.
Danny Hudson, partner at Watsons Solicitors, is keen to ensure the general public know that outcomes such as injunctions can be in place in the same amount of time as before the virus hit.
He said: “It’s a scary time: the stay-at-home order could increase domestic tensions as well as keep victims of domestic abuse inside with their partner with no respite, such as work or the school run.
“Importantly, those who require support from the justice system can still receive necessary protection.”
The courts have put in place protocols to ensure that if you need the protection of the court then you can get it. There are several court orders that can be imposed to protect adults and children involved, as well as any property and finances.
Danny added: “An order under the Family Law Act 1996 such as a non-molestation order protects the person or the child being harmed or threatened, while an occupation order dictates who can live in or enter the family home.
“In addition, under the Children Act 1989, a prohibited steps order can prevent a parent from, for example, removing a child from their home.
“If you are married then the Matrimonial Causes Act 1973 allows you to get interim orders dealing with income and freezing property or bank accounts.
“Anyone suffering from domestic abuse should rest assured that normal court proceedings are still available, and can be enforced by the police if required.”
Watsons Solicitors, which has been established for more than 60 years and is based on Bold Street, Warrington, specialises in family law, employment law, wills and probate, personal injury and conveyancing.
The team of experienced solicitors each hold various accreditations and memberships of professional bodies relevant to their expertise, while the firm’s partners oversee all areas of work.
For more information visit www.watsonssolicitors.com