When encountering difficulties at home a spouse/cohabitee presently has the ability to seek a Non Molestation Order for protection against domestic abuse and/or an Occupation Order in the event the party is seeking to exclude their partner from the home. The new Order proposed in the consultation papers may allow for a single protective Order to be made during ongoing proceedings , on conviction or acquittal in criminal proceedings. The new proposed Order does not negate the need for Non Molestation or Occupation Orders but offers an alternative.
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The government has proposed creating a single protection order applicable across the criminal, family and civil courts among measures unveiled today to support victims of domestic abuse, acknowledging that the current range of orders can confuse victims and practitioners. A Home Office and Ministry of Justice consultation, entitled Transforming the response to domestic abuse, states that domestic violence protection orders are specific to cases of domestic violence, but that other orders, including restraining, non-molestation and occupation orders, can be made in varying circumstances. These orders vary in terms of who can apply for them, the conditions attached and the consequences if they are breached. Different parties, including victims, agencies and the police, can apply for different orders.