A non-molestation order is designed to stop a current or former partner or a relative, from doing certain things, such as using or threatening violence against you, harassing, pestering or intimidating you or, in some cases, contacting you at all whether directly or via another person. The court will look at all the circumstances of the case, including whether an order is necessary to secure your health, safety and well-being and/or that of any child. Non-molestation orders are usually made for 6 months but can be extended where there is a good reason.

If you are being subjected to violent or abusive behaviour by your ex-partner you may need to apply for a non-molestation order. Often a warning letter will be sufficient to stop the abusive behaviour and we have achieved success at this early stage before. However, in more serious cases you may need to apply for an urgent order. Get in touch with us to assess your case to ensure you and your children get the protection you need.


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In some cases, the court can make an order regulating who can and cannot live in the family home. This is known as an occupation order. You may be in an abusive relationship and wish for your former partner to be excluded from your property, or you may have been excluded from your own home and wish to return. You may be the primary carer of a young child and it is imperative you both return home (even where there is no violence) because you have nowhere else to go.


If there is an urgent need for protection, the court can grant an order the same day the application is made. The circumstances of an urgent case may mean that the order needs to be made by the court without giving notice to the other party of the application.

After an order is made without notice, there will need to be a follow-up hearing to give the other person a chance to address the court which could include an objection to the making of the order. If they do object and it is not possible to agree on a way of compromising the proceedings safely, the court will arrange a further contested hearing at which each side will give evidence and the judge will decide whether to continue with the order, vary the order or discharge the order.

A difference between non-molestation and occupation orders is that occupation orders are rarely made without notice, even if the applicant is successful in getting an immediate non-molestation order. The reason is that an occupation order can potentially render a person instantly homeless and the court will be extremely reluctant to do this without giving the respondent a chance to put their case forward and respond to what the applicant has said in their application. The applicant may be expected to seek temporary accommodation in the meantime while the case is being heard.


Sometimes it is necessary to act fast particularly where a parent believes there is a genuine risk of abduction by the other parent (including taking out of the country) or where the child may otherwise be in harm’s way, which may include emotional harm. We are experienced in working fast to ensure the safe return of a child.

A child-related injunction can also be sought to prevent domestic violence, for the personal protection of a parent, or to safeguard children.

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Sometimes injunctions are necessary in relation to financial matters. Obvious examples could include selling property (whether real estate or other property of high value) and completion dates are nearing or disposing of ready cash.

To secure a financial injunction a spouse (or cohabitee in the case of unmarried couples) has to be able to show that their husband, wife or partner is intending to use the money for the purposes of defeating the spouse’s or cohabitee’s financial claim. The order will last until discharged by the court or the court makes a financial court order dividing the family assets.


Sometimes an injunction can be obtained the same or next day thereby offering immediate protection. This is a specialist area, and we (and you) will need to act fast. If you need help to apply for an injunction order or if you are on the receiving end of an injunction application and do not know what to do then you need urgent family law advice please call urgently. Kindly note, we do not offer legal aid and all work is carried on a private fee-paying basis only.

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I can’t thank David Smith enough for the way in which he handled my divorce. His friendly and approachable manner was much appreciated, throughout what was inevitably a difficult and emotional time. He also fought my corner with tenacity, leading to a fabulous financial settlement. At a time of such uncertainty, it is reassuring to know that you are in safe hands……I would not hesitate to recommend David to anyone going through the same experience.

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David’s advice was critical in resolving a complex family matter. Without his involvement, the case would have stalled. He helped me to understand the legalities of the situation and provided direction in what I found to be a highly confusing situation. Great, clear advice delivered in a personable manner.

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