Giving evidence – special measures in court article banner image

Giving evidence in court can often be a daunting experience for the parties involved. In circumstances where a relationship has broken down, disputes about financial issues and the arrangements for children can be especially upsetting and a difficult process to go through. Victims of domestic abuse can find giving evidence especially traumatic, when often they have to relive events to help seek protection from the court.

Parties will often be very anxious with the thought of having to come into contact with their spouse or partner, particularly in cases when recent very distressing events are often rehearsed.

The court can allow a variety of measures to be put in place to ensure that a victim can put their case to the court in the most comfortable circumstances as possible such as:

  • allowing evidence to be given behind screens
  • make available separate waiting areas and
  • in some situations evidence can be taken via remote video link.

This can ensure that the victim is kept far away from the perpetrator and protected whilst still being able to present their case to the court to seek protection.

Victims can get support from agencies like Women’s Aid, domestic violence helplines, victim support and other local agencies who help build a safety plan around a victim.

Our family team know how sensitive issues can be for victims of abuse and can provide practical and legal advice to help find a solution that meets a client’s needs. This can include not only obtaining the protection of non molestation and occupation orders to safeguard a victim and their children, preserve the peaceful occupation of the family home and to help resolve financial matters.

Ed Bidder works in all aspects of family law, in particular dealing with children and matrimonial matters, assistant to Mark Smith. Ed is training to become a Legal Executive. Stephens Scown has offices in Exeter, Truro and St Austell. Its top-rated family team advises clients on a wide range of family law issues including divorce and family finance. Ed can be contacted on 01392 210700 or email