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024 7625 3172



What is domestic violence and abuse?

How can the law help me?

Who will help me?

Violence and abuse

Domestic violence and abuse take many forms. They can affect anyone in any sort of relationship. Sometimes, people experiencing these problems don’t realise or recognise they’re happening, but they always have serious and lasting effects on those who suffer from them. You may ask yourself “am I being abused?”

Violence and abuse can be:

• psychological
• physical
• sexual
• financial
• emotional.

Controlling and coercive behaviour that threatens, humiliates, intimidates, isolates or frightens people are also types of domestic abuse.

Common signs of domestic violence also include:

• verbal criticism and abuse
• pressure tactics
• disrespect
• breaking trust
• harassment
• denial
• saying it won’t happen again.

Many sorts of domestic violence are crimes (for example, harassment, assault, criminal damage, attempted murder, rape and false imprisonment).


The Law

We can explain your legal rights, help you to take informed decisions and make sure you understand how these might impact on other things in your life.

Safeplace offers a packaged service, so if you contact us you can be sure we’ll discuss all the issues you’re facing or thinking about. We provide free and detailed initial legal advice on family law, immigration, benefits, debt, community care and housing issues.

Every situation is different and you may feel like there are barriers preventing you from taking action. In whatever way domestic violence or abuse affects you, we believe that knowing your rights and understanding your choices and options will make you stronger.


Legal Aid

Despite recent changes to the system, Legal Aid is still available for cases involving family law and immigration for people affected by domestic violence and abuse. At your initial appointment with a qualified advisor or solicitor, we’ll discuss whether you are eligible for Legal Aid, and explain how this affects the support we can provide.


Our team

Our family law solicitors, Ravinder Bains and John Hickey, specialise in dealing with cases involving domestic violence and children.

Ravinder manages the Safeplace service and will handle your enquiry to ensure you see or speak to the most suitable person for initial advice. She works closely with other Coventry organisations supporting people affected by domestic violence and abuse. Ravinder also has an extensive background in immigration and asylum law. She speaks fluent Punjabi and is happy to see clients who prefer to talk to a female solicitor.

John has over 20 years’ experience in family law and is a member of The Law Society Accredited Family Panel.

Our team also includes Robert Bircumshaw, Narinder Samra, Katie Fennel, Inger Denhaan and Ajmal Rahimedad, who are all specialist immigration advisors or solicitors.

Philip Monk is our money and debt advice expert. He is a qualified and experienced solicitor, who is an Authorised Intermediary for Debt Relief Orders. He works with Tom White, Anne White and Lisa Milborn to help clients deal with Statutory Demands, Charging Orders, challenging debts, council tax hearings and bankruptcy.

Our housing and community care law solicitor, Lydia Nash, has extensive experience in advising families about their housing rights and has helped many families to get homes in Coventry. She works alongside Alexander Gidden, Megan Ward, Marian Seddon and Alan Thomas.

David Beckett leads our welfare benefits team. He has more than 25 years’ specialist experience, including representing clients at appeals and tribunals across a wide range of benefits. He works alongside our other experienced advisors, Janet Gurney, David Fearns, Jo Foster, Andy Malik and Natasha Ramrous.

We also have a team of passionate, committed and trained volunteers who dedicate their time, knowledge and skills to support Coventry Law Centre’s solicitors and advisors.

contact us

Expert, confidential legal help and advice.

024 7625 3172

Email: safeplace@covlaw.org.uk

Coventry Law Centre, Oakwood House, St Patricks Road Entrance, Coventry, CV1 2HL

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