If you are frightened of your current or former partner, then you have a right to be protected under the law.
If you are in immediate danger, an application can be made to the court on the same day. This is called a ‘without notice’ or ‘ex parte’ application. If the court grants a ‘without notice’ order, you will have to return to court for a full hearing once your abuser has been served with notice.
You could try to gain some protection from your abuser by applying for a civil injunction or a protection order. There are two types of injunction available under Part IV of the Family Law Act 1996.
A Non Molestation Order (NMO)
Aimed at preventing your partner or ex partner from using or threatening violence against you or your child, or intimidating, harassing or pestering you, in order to ensure the health, safety and well-being of you and your children.
It is important to note that a breach of a Non Molestation Order is now a criminal offence. If you already have an injunction, you may have a power of arrest attached to it. These powers come into effect if your abuser breaches the order.
An Occupation Order
Regulates who can live in the family home, and can also restrict your abuser from entering the surrounding area. If you do not feel safe continuing to live with your partner, or if you have left because of violence, but want to return to your home and exclude your abuser, you may want to apply for an Occupation Order.
Fermanagh Women’s Aid can offer you support in obtaining legal advice.