Domestic violence

When violence becomes a problem in a relationship.
The Domestic Violence Act 1996 and The Domestic Violence Amendment Act 2002 enables a Court to make Barring Orders, Safety Orders or Protection Orders.  The purpose of the order must be the protection of  married couples, co-habiting couples, children or others living in a domestic relationship. The Court must be satisfied  there is a risk to the safety or welfare of the person seeking the order.

Applications for Barring Orders, Safety Orders and Protection Orders

A Barring Order made by the Court compels the person complained about to leave the house and not return for a specified period of time. There may often be an interval of time between the application for the Barring Order and the Court hearing to decide on the matter. The Court will issue a protection order to protect the Applicant between the date of the application of the Barring Order and the date when the Barring Order is heard. The person complained about will be allowed to remain in the home pending the hearing of  the application but if there is any further violence, or threat of violence, the Gardai (who will have been sent a copy of the protection order) may be contacted immediately by the Applicant. The Gardaí will attend at the house and arrest the person or persons who are in breach of the Protection Order.

Who can apply for Barring Orders, Safety Orders or Protection Orders

  • A spouse regardless of how long the couple have lived together
  • Unmarried partners who have lived together for a period of at least 6 of the previous 9 months
  • A parent on behalf of a dependent child
  • A parent may seek an order against a child who is not a dependant
  • A person over 18 who lives with another in a relationship the basis of which is non- contractual
  • Relatives who live together
  • The HSE

Safety Order

A Safety Order does not require the person complained about to leave the dwelling but prohibits them threatening or putting the Applicant in fear of violence. It is an offence to breach any of the above Orders and the Gardai have powers to arrest the person breaching the Order.