Section 65 of the Domestic Abuse Act: a step in the right direction for victims

25th October 2022·Industry News

This summer marked a shift in the legislation surrounding domestic abuse cases, with changes to Section 65 of the Domestic Abuse Act presenting a step forward for victims who are taking legal action in court.

As of July 2022, new legislation was introduced under the Domestic Abuse Act which restricts the ability of cross-examination by litigants in person specifically in cases which involve allegations of domestic abuse. The changes to legislation were made in response to concerns that perpetrators were utilising the judicial process as an opportunity to extend their abuse of their victim, with sufferers dealing with further trauma as a result.

Each year, nearly 2 million people in the UK suffer some form of domestic abuse, with women disproportionately affected. The changes ushered in this summer are part of a larger shift in the UK government in regard to the pressing issue of domestic abuse, which is evident in the landmark Domestic Abuse Act (2021).

woman after domestic abuse act

How will this change benefit victims of domestic abuse?

As part of the legislation, a legal bar will now be placed on parties cross-examining one another wherein there is evidence of abuse and/or there is a conviction or protective injunction in place between the parties.

Instead, the examination will be carried out by a court-appointed legal professional in order to ensure that the process is fair and that trauma is minimised for victims appearing in court.

The overall impact for victims is a positive one. Changes to legislation and the introduction of new measures will provide victims with greater protection during the judicial process, which is typically experienced as incredibly stressful and traumatic.

The hope is that sympathetic measures such as this will give greater confidence to victims of domestic abuse who wish to come forward.

If you are suffering from domestic abuse, we can help. For confidential assistance and advice get in touch today. 

Section 65 of the Domestic Abuse Act: a step in the right direction for victims

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