Latest insights from our experts

Posted 24 March 2016
by Tracy Lambert

Family Injunctions

The Family Law Act 1996 provides protection to those who are at risk of harm. Non-molestation and Occupation Orders, otherwise known as Family Injunctions, can be applied for through the courts to provide assistance and protection from those at risk of further abuse.

Non-molestation Orders

These can be applied for to put a stop to physical or threatening and intimidating behaviour. You can apply for a Non-molestation order against someone with whom you hold one of the following relationships:

  • Your spouse/civil partner or fiancée
  • A partner with whom you live
  • A family member or other relationSomeone you have a child with or someone who has parental responsibility for your child
  • Someone with whom you have had an intimate relationship for a significant period of time

Occupation Orders

These can be applied for by a person to exclude another party from occupying the home that was, has been or was intended to be the home of the applicant and the person that they are applying to exclude. An “exclusion zone” can be extended to include a specified area around the home.

For all Family Injunctions the courts need to take account the housing needs of both parties and any children affected as well as the financial position of the parties and any conduct.

Family Injunctions are usually in place for a specified period of time (usually 6 – 12 months) but can be renewed after the expiry date. It is possible to apply for the order to be effective until a further order is made.

If a Family Injunction is broken the offending party can be arrested and the penalty can hold a prison sentence of up to five years.

Emergency Orders

If you require an emergency order to take immediate effect, we can help you apply for a ‘without notice’ order which will grant protection for you and/or your family a lot sooner.

If you require protection from domestic abuse contact our specialist Family Injunction Solicitors today for a free, no-obligation consultation.


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About the author

Tracy Lambert

Partner and Solicitor

Partner based in Exeter's family team