November 26, 2020

Domestic Abuse & Coercive Behaviour

This post was written by: Ilinca Mardarescu

A number of parties either married, in a civil partnership or cohabiting tolerate coercive control by their partner and a number of parties do not even know what coercive control is or what remedies are available to them.

Coercive Control is:

An act or a pattern of acts of assault, threats, humiliation, intimidation and other abuse which is used by a party to harm, punish or frighten their victim.

Or as the Home Office has said, ‘A purposeful pattern of behaviour which takes place over time in order for one individual to exert power, control or coercion over another’.


  •  A common sign is where a party seeks to isolate their partner from their friends or family
  • Seeks to control the life of the other party.
  • Seeks to control the families’ finances
  • Repeatedly degrades the other party in public or in front of family members
  • Must see any communication the other party has.

A prime example of coercive control is where one party informs the other that their relationship is at an end and where the other party threatens that they will report the party ending the relationship to the Local Authority and they will ensure the party ending the relationship loses their children.

If you are in such a relationship then an application may be made to the Court for an Injunction to prevent this behaviour.  Parties should not tolerate such relationships and it especially harmful to children living in a household where coercive behaviour is being tolerated by a party.

Coercive Behaviour is also a crime

In 2015 The Serious Crime Act was introduced and coercive behaviour became an offence.  Thus as well as taking civil proceedings for an injunction the matter may be reported to the police who may bring a prosecution against the party using coercive behaviour.

We sincerely hope you are not a victim of coercive control.   However, in the event that you are please do not hesitate to telephone our Senior Family Solicitor Lynette A’Court on 07754662438 for your free initial consultation.