Relationships & Family Law

Protection

Initial Contacts

There are two situations where protection may be needed.

Protection Orders

These are applied for when there is a risk of harm to one person within a relationship. They can be applied for without notice, where the risk of harm is immediate and there has been some previous and some recent violence or threat of violence. Violence can be physical or psychological. If an order is made without notice it is temporary and the violent partner has a chance to defend the order being made final. If they do not defend the order it is made final after 3 months. Orders will automatically extend to children of the relationship who are under 17. It may also extend to other people. If a protection order is breached it is a criminal offence. Breaches include such things as emailing or ringing the person who has the benefit of the order, or following them or getting other people to do such things. It is important to report breaches to the police.

Welfare Guardians or Property Managers

Orders for the appointment of welfare guardians and/or property managers are made by application to Court where the subject person lacks the ability to manage or communicate decisions about their own affairs and/or about their welfare. This means they have been medically assessed as lacking capacity. If they have not previously appointed someone to act for them under enduring powers of attorney then the only way authority can be obtained is with the Courts approval. Such applications can be made on an urgent basis as a temporary order to allow specific urgent matters to be dealt with or through the normal Court process. A lawyer is appointed for the incapacitated person to ensure they do lack ability and that the orders being applied for are appropriate. Orders only last for three years at which time they must be applied for again. Property managers must make annual reports to Court about what they have done with the persons property, bank accounts and income and outgoings. Such reports are audited by the Public Trust.

If you have questions about protections orders or welfare guardians or property managers please contact us.