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Family Violence

What is domestic violence?
Domestic violence is a repeated pattern of behaviour an abuser uses to gain power and control over the victim through physical, sexual, emotional, verbal, and/or financial abuse. It is on-going and usually escalates. Domestic violence occurs in familial and/or intimate relationships in which people are living separately or in the same household, and between people in current or previous relationships. Domestic violence is perpetrated regardless of age, income, education, religion, sexual orientation, culture or race.

When domestic violence enters a family, it may take a number of forms, namely: physical abuse, financial abuse, sexual abuse and emotional abuse.

What is physical abuse?
Physical abuse involves the use of physical force to enforce an unequal power relationship. Some of the more obvious examples include: hitting, pushing, shoving and kicking. However, physical abuse also includes more subtle forms of control such as the refusal to help your partner when sick or injured, driving recklessly and putting your partner’s life in danger and locking your partner out of the house.

What is financial abuse?
Financial/resource abuse occurs where one partner has access to information that the other partner does not. This type of abuse includes the control of money or bank accounts, withholding financial information and child support. Examples include taking or breaking of a phone or motor vehicle, destroying property and taking a partner’s keys or purse/wallet.

What is sexual abuse?
Sexual abuse involves one partner pressurising the other partner to perform unwanted sexual acts. It also includes rape, incest and forcing your partner to view pornographic material. Sexual abuse may also take a more covert form such as making demeaning sexual remarks.

What is emotional abuse?
Emotional abuse is the most difficult to define and is the most prevalent kind of abuse that lives in families. It is true that all partners in close relationships become angry at, criticise, and disagree with one another. In the heat of an argument, even happily married couples may insult each other or behave in a way that looks like emotional abuse.

However, emotional abuse for purposes of obtaining a protection order, involves the repeated use of verbal and other non-physical forms of aggression to intimidate, subjugate and control another human being. It is not only mean and cruel behaviour on the surface of the interaction, but behaviour that serves to consolidate power and maintain fear. Emotional abuse is often used in conjunction with physical abuse, and is often strengthened by the threat of physical violence and may include the threat of physical violence directed at children or even pets. 

Antenuptial Agreements

Please click on link to Matrimonial Guide for information about when an antenuptial Agreement should be entered into

Matrimonial Guide

Alternatively, please click on link provided to complete and submit Spousal Information for Antenuptial Agreement

Spousal Information

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