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T HEDOMESTIC

VIOLENCEEBOOK

T HEDOMESTIC VIOLENCEEBOOK SAYNOTOABUSE ABUSE HARASSMENT STALKING

SAYNOTOABUSE

ABUSE

HARASSMENT

STALKING

T his booklet was made possible with funding from B ertus Preller & Associates Inc.

with funding from B ertus Preller & Associates Inc. Written by Bertus Preller No part of

Written by Bertus Preller

No part of this publication may be reproduced,stored in a retrieval system or transmitted,in any form or by any means,including but not limited to electronic,mechanical,recorded or photocopied means,without the written consent of the author.

All information,advice and/or opinions in this publication is of a general nature which should be used as a guideline only. Readers are encouraged to obtain legal advice or assistance in addition to the information,advice or opinions contained in this publication.

The author shall not be held liable legally,or in any other way, for any incorrect and/or inaccurate information,advice or opinion contained in this publication by any reader,state department or official and/or interested party or stakeholder.

This booklet was made possible with funding fromBertus Preller & Associates Inc.

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P AGE 1

DOMESTIC ABUSE

I NTRODUCTION

I N MEMORY OF REEVA STEENKAMP AND ALL THOSE WHO HAVE SUFFERED FROM DOMESTIC ABUSE.

W HAT IS THE DOMESTIC VIOLENCE

ACT?

WHAT IS THE DOMESTIC VIOLENCE

ACT?

Thisebookexplainshowyoucanusethe

DomesticViolenceAct(DVA)toprotect

yourselffromdomesticabuse.TheDVA

makesitpossibleforyoutogetaninterim

protectionorderagainstanabuser.The

protectionorderwillprohibittheabuserfrom assaulted,threatenedandhumiliatedbytheir

committingfurtheractsofdomesticviolence partners,withintheirownhomes.Organisations

againstyou.Iftheabusercommitsanactof

domesticviolenceagainstyouthatis

prohibitedintheprotectionorder,he/shecan least46percentofcases,themeninvolvedalso

bearrestedandtakentoacourtfordefying

theprotectionorder.

TheDomesticViolenceAct116of1998(“the Althoughtheexactpercentagesaredisputed,there

DVA”)isthelawthatdealswithdomestic

violenceinSouthAfrica.Thislawexiststo

givevictimswhoareexperiencingdomestic

violencethebestpossibleprotectionthatthe broadconsensusthatwomenaremoreoften

lawcanoffer.

SouthAfricahasoneofthehighestincidencesof

domesticviolenceintheworld.And,sadly,domestic

violenceisthemostcommonandwidespread

humanrightsabuseinSouthAfrica.Everyday,

womenaremurdered,physicallyandsexually

estimatethatoneoutofeverysixwomaninSouth

Africaisregularlyassaultedbyherpartner.Inat

abusethechildrenlivingwiththewoman.

isalargebodyofcross­culturalevidencethat

womenaresubjectedtodomesticviolence

significantlymorethanmen.Inaddition,thereis

subjectedtosevereformsofabuseandaremore

likelytobeinjuredbyanabusivepartner.

P AGE 2

D OMESTIC ABUSE

D OMESTICVIOLENCE

Determininghowmanyinstancesofdomesticviolenceactuallyinvolvemalevictimsisdifficult.Some

studieshaveshownthatwomenwhoassaulttheirmalepartnersaremorelikelytoavoidarrestevenwhen

themalevictimcontactsthepolice.Anotherstudyconcludedthatfemaleperpetratorsareviewedbylaw

enforcementasthevictimsratherthantheactualoffendersofviolenceagainstmen.Otherstudieshave

alsodemonstratedahighdegreeofcommunityacceptanceofaggressionagainstmenbywomen.

Domesticviolencealsooccursinsame­sexrelationships.Gayandlesbianrelationshipshavebeen

identifiedasriskfactorsforabuseincertainpopulations.Historically,domesticviolencehasbeenseenas

afamilyissueandlittleinteresthasbeendirectedatviolenceinsame­sexrelationships.

Domesticviolenceisapatternofabusivebehaviourthattransgressestherightofcitizenstobefreefrom

violence.Whenonepartnerinarelationshipharmstheothertoobtainormaintainpowerandcontrolover

them,regardlessofwhethertheyaremarriedorunmarried,livingtogetherorapart,thatisdomestic

violence.The‘harm’cantakeavarietyofforms,whetheritbefromverbalabuselikeshouting,emotional

abuselikemanipulation,controland/orhumiliation,physicalabuselikehittingand/orpunching,and/or

sexualabuselikerapeand/orinappropriatetouchingofeitherthewomanorherchildren.

"Ifthenumbersweseeindomesticviolencewereappliedtoterrorismorgangviolence,theentirecountry

wouldbeupinarms,anditwouldbetheleadstoryonthenewseverynight."

P AGE 3

DOMESTIC ABUSE

S IGNSOFANABUSIVE

RELATIONSHIP

Y OUR THOUGHTS AND FEELINGS

YOUR PARTNER/SPOUSES BEHAVIOUR

DO YOU:

feelafraidofyourpartner/spousemostof

thetime?

avoidcertaintopicsoutoffearof

angeringyourpartner/spouse?

feelthatyoucan’tdoanythingrightfor

yourpartner/spouse?

believethatyoudeservetobehurtor

abused?

wanderattimesthatyouaretheonewho

iscrazy?

feelemotionallynumborhelpless?

YOUR PARTNER/SPOUSES VIOLENT BEHAVIOUR OR THREATS

DOES YOUR PARTNER/SPOUSE:

haveabadandunpredictabletemper

hurtyou,orthreatentohurtorkillyou?

hurtyou,orthreatentohurtorkillyou? threatentotakeyourchildrenawayor harmthem?

threatentotakeyourchildrenawayor

threatentotakeyourchildrenawayor harmthem? threatentocommitsuicideifyouleave?
threatentotakeyourchildrenawayor harmthem? threatentocommitsuicideifyouleave?

harmthem?

threatentocommitsuicideifyouleave?

harmthem? threatentocommitsuicideifyouleave? forceyoutohavesex? destroyyourbelongings? DOES YOUR PARTNER
harmthem? threatentocommitsuicideifyouleave? forceyoutohavesex? destroyyourbelongings? DOES YOUR PARTNER

forceyoutohavesex?

destroyyourbelongings?

DOES YOUR PARTNER/SPOUSE:

oftenhumiliateoryellatyou?

criticiseyouandputyoudown?

treatyousobadlythatyou’re

embarrassedforyourfriendsorfamilyto

see?

ignoreorputdownyouropinionsor

accomplishments?

blameyoufortheirownabusive

behaviour?

seeyouaspropertyorasexobject,rather

thanasaperson?

YOUR PARTNER/SPOUSES CONTROLLING BEHAVIOUR

DOES YOUR PARTNER/SPOUSE:

actexcessivel yj

ealousandpossessive?

controlPARTNER / SPOUSE : actexcessivel yj ealousandpossessive? whereyougoorwhatyoudo? keepyoufromseeingyourfri endsor fami

whereyougoorwhatyoudo?

keepyoufromseeingyourfri

endsor

famiwhereyougoorwhatyoudo? keepyoufromseeingyourfri endsor ly? l imityouraccesstomoney,thephoneor thevehi cl e?

whereyougoorwhatyoudo? keepyoufromseeingyourfri endsor fami ly? l imityouraccesstomoney,thephoneor thevehi cl e?

ly?

l
l
keepyoufromseeingyourfri endsor fami ly? l imityouraccesstomoney,thephoneor thevehi cl e?

imityouraccesstomoney,thephoneor

keepyoufromseeingyourfri endsor fami ly? l imityouraccesstomoney,thephoneor thevehi cl e? constantlycheckuponyou?

thevehi cl e?

constantlycheckuponyou?

P AGE 4

D OMESTIC ABUSE

T YPESOFDOMESTICABUSE

Physicalabuse

Anyactorthreatofphysicalviolenceintendedtocausephysicalpain,injury,sufferingor

bodilyharm.Physicalabusecanincludehitting,slapping,punching,choking,pushingandany

othertypeofcontactthatresultsinphysicalinjurytothevictim.Physicalabusecanalso

includebehaviourssuchasdenyingthevictimmedicalcarewhenneeded,deprivingthevictim

ofsleeporotherfunctionsnecessarytolive,orforcingthevictimtoengageindrug/alcoholuse

againsthis/herwill.Itcanalsoincludeinflictingphysicalinjuryontoothertargets,suchas

childrenorpets,inordertocausepsychologicalharmtothevictim.

Sexualabuse

Anyconductthatabuses,humiliates,degradesorotherwiseviolatesthesexualintegrityofthe

victim.Sexualabuseisanysituationinwhichforceorthreatisusedtoobtainparticipationin

unwantedsexualactivity.Coercingapersontoengageinsexualactivityagainsttheirwill,

evenifthatpersonisaspouseorintimatepartnerwithwhomconsensualsexhasoccurred

previously,isanactofaggressionandviolence.SexualviolenceisdefinedbytheWorld

HealthOrganizationas:anysexualact,attempttoobtainasexualact,unwantedsexual

commentsoradvances,oractstotraffic,orotherwisedirected,againstaperson’ssexuality

usingcoercion,byanypersonregardlessoftheirrelationshiptothevictim,inanysetting,

includingbutnotlimitedtohomeandwork.Maritalrape,alsoknownasspousalrape,isnon­

consensualsexinwhichtheperpetratoristhevictim’sspouse.Assuch,itisaformofpartner

rape,andamountstodomesticviolenceandsexualabuse.Maritalrapehasbeendescribedas

oneofthemostseriousviolationsofawomen’sbodilyintegrityandyetitisatermthatmany

peoplestillhaveaproblemcomprehending,withsomestilldescribingitasa‘contradictionin

terms’.

P AGE 5

D OMESTIC ABUSE

T YPESOFDOMESTICABUSE

Emotional,verbalandpsychologicalabuse

Usuallyapatternofdegradingorhumiliatingconducttowardsthevictimprivatelyorpublicly,

includingrepeatedinsults,ridicule,namecallingand/orrepeatedthreatstocauseemotionalpain;or

therepeatedexhibitionofobsessivepossessivenessorjealousy,whichissuchastoconstitutea

seriousinvasionofthevictim’sprivacy,liberty,integrityand/orsecurity.

Otheractsthatfallunderemotionalabuseincludecontrollingwhatthevictimcanandcannotdo,

withholdinginformationfromthevictim,deliberatelydoingsomethingtomakethevictimfeel

diminishedorembarrassed,isolatingthevictimfromfriendsandfamily,implicitlyblackmailingthe

victimbyharmingotherswhenthevictimexpressesindependenceorhappiness,anddenyingthe

victimaccesstomoneyorotherbasicresourcesandnecessities.

Emotionalabuseincludesconflictingactionsorstatementsthataredesignedtoconfuseandcreate

insecurityinthevictim.Thesebehavioursleadvictimstoquestionthemselves,causingthemto

believethattheyaremakinguptheabuseorthattheabuseistheirfault.

Emotionalabusealsoincludesforcefuleffortstoisolatethevictim,tokeepthemfromcontacting

friendsorfamily.Thisisintendedtoeliminatethosewhomighttrytohelpthevictimleavethe

relationshipandtocreatealackofresourcesforthevictimtorelyoniftheyweretoleave.Isolation

eventuallydamagesthevictim’ssenseofinternalstrength,leavingthemfeelinghelplessandunable

toescapefromthesituation.Womenandmenundergoingemotionalabuseoftensufferfrom

depression,whichputsthematincreasedriskforsuicide,eatingdisorders,anddrugandalcohol

abuse.

P AGE 6

D OMESTIC ABUSE

T YPESOFDOMESTICABUSE

Economicabuse

Includestheunreasonabledeprivationofeconomicorfinancialresourcestowhichthevictimisentitled

underlaworrequiresoutofnecessity,includinghouseholdnecessities,mortgagebondrepayments,rent

moneyinthecaseofasharedresidence,and/ortheunreasonabledisposalofhouseholdeffectsorother

propertyinwhichthevictimhasaninterest.Economicabusemayinvolvepreventingavictimfrom

resourceacquisition,limitingtheamountofresourcesavailabletohim/her,orexploitingthevictim’s

economicresources.Themotivebehindpreventingavictimfromacquiringresourcesistodiminishhis/her

capacitytosupporthim/herself,thusforcingthevictimtodependontheperpetratorfinancially.Inthisway,

theperpetratorcanpreventthevictimfromobtainingeducation,findingemployment,maintainingor

advancingacareerandacquiringassets.Theabusermayalsoputthevictimonanallowanceandclosely

monitorhowhe/shespendsmoney.Sometimestheabuserwillspendthevictim’smoneywithouthis/her

consentandcreatedebt,orevencompletelyspendthevictim’ssavingstolimitavailableresources.

Intimidation

Utteringorconveyingathreat,orcausingavictimtoreceiveathreat,whichinducesfear.Theabusermay

useavarietyofintimidationtacticsdesignedtoscarethevictimintosubmission.Suchtacticsmayinclude

smashingthingsinfrontofthevictim,destroyingproperty,hurtingthevictim’spetsorshowingoffa

weapon.Theclearmessageisthatifthevictimdoesn’tobey,theremightbeviolentconsequences.

Harassment

Engaginginapatternofconductthatinducesafearofharminthevictim,includingrepeatedlywatchingthe

victim;loiteringoutsideofornearthebuilding/placewherethevictimresides,works,carriesoutbusiness,

studiesorhappenstobe;repeatedlymakingtelephonecallsorinducinganotherpersontomaketelephone

callstothevictim,whetherornotconversationensues;repeatedlysending,deliveringorcausingthe

deliveryofletters,emails,texts,packagesorotherobjectstothevictim.

P AGE 7

D OMESTIC ABUSE

T YPESOFDOMESTICABUSE

Stalking

Thereisnoreallegaldefinitionofstalking.Neitheristhereanyspecificlegislationtoaddressthisbehaviour.

Thetermisusedtodefineaparticularkindofharassment.Generally,itreferstoalong­termpatternof

persistentandrepetitivecontactwith,orattemptstocontact,aparticularvictim.Examplesofthetypesof

conductoftenassociatedwithstalkinginclude:directcommunication;physicalfollowing;indirectcontact

throughfriends,workcolleagues,familyortechnology(emailorSMS);andotherintrusionsintothevictim’s

privacy.TheabusemayalsotakeplaceonsocialnetworkslikeFacebook,onlineforums,Twitter,instant

messaging,SMS,BBMorviachatsoftware.Thestalkermayusewebsitestopostoffensivematerial,create

fakeprofilesorevenmakeadedicatedwebsiteaboutthevictim.

Damagetoproperty

Willfuldamagingordestructionofpropertybelongingtothevictimorinwhichthevictimhasavestedinterest.

Entryintoproperty

Entryintothevictim’sresidencewithoutconsent,wherethepartiesdonotsharethesameresidence.

Anyothercontrollingorabusivebehaviour

Anyconductthatharms,ormaycauseimminentharmto,thesafety,healthorwellbeingofthevictim.

‘Imminentharm’includessituationswhere:

•theperpetratorisinthepossessionofafirearmandhasthreatenedtousethefirearmagainstthevictim,or

herdependentsorotherfamilymembers;

•theperpetratorhasusedaweaponagainstthevictiminpreviousincidencesofdomesticviolence(not

restrictedtodangerousweapons,suchasfirearmsorknives);

•thevictimwascriticallyinjuredbytheperpetratoronapreviousoccasion,orontheoccasioninquestion;

•thevictimandherchildrenhavebeen‘kickedout’ofthesharedresidencebytheperpetratororanyone

affiliatedwithhim;

•thevictimhassufficientevidence(i.e.witnessstatements)thattheperpetratorhasthreatenedtoharmher;

andthevictimfearsforthesafetyofherchildren.

P AGE 8

D OMESTIC ABUSE

D YNAMICSOFABUSE

Anyonecanbeavictimofdomesticviolence.ThereisNO“typicalvictim.”Victimsofdomesticviolence

comefromallwalksoflife,varyingagegroups,allbackgrounds,allcommunities,alleducationlevels,

alleconomiclevels,allcultures,allethnicities,allreligions,allabilities,andalllifestyles.Victimsof

domesticviolencedonotbringviolenceuponthemselves,theydonotalwayslackself­confidence,nor

aretheyjustasabusiveastheabuser.Violenceinrelationshipsoccurswhenonepersonfeelsentitled

topowerandcontrolovertheirpartnerandchoosestouseabusetogainandmaintainthatcontrol.In

relationshipswheredomesticviolenceexists,violenceisnotequal,evenifthevictimfightsbackor

instigatesviolenceineffortdiffuseasituation.Thereisalwaysonepersonwhoistheprimary,constant

sourceofpower,control,andabuseintherelationship.

Everyrelationshipdiffers,butwhatismostcommonwithinallabusiverelationshipsisthevarying

tacticsusedbyabuserstogainandmaintainpowerandcontroloverthevictim.Manywomenandmen

haveexperiencedrape,physicalviolence,and/orstalkingbyanintimatepartner[orformerpartner]and

reportedatleastoneimpactrelatedtoexperiencingtheseorotherformsofviolentbehaviourinthe

relationship(i.e.,feelingfearful,concernforsafety,post­traumaticstressdisorder(PTSD),needfor

healthcare,injury,crisissupport,needforhousingservices,needforvictimadvocacyservices,need

forlegalservices,missedworkorschool).

Physicalandsexualassaults,orthreatstocommitthem,arethemostapparentformsofdomestic

violenceandareusuallytheactionsthatmakeothersawareoftheproblem.However,regularuseof

otherabusivebehavioursbytheabuser,whenreinforcedbyoneormoreactsofphysicalviolence,

makeupalargerscopeofabuse.Althoughphysicalassaultsmayoccuronlyoccasionally,theyinstill

fearoffutureviolentattacksandallowtheabusertocontrolthevictim’slifeandcircumstances.

Thereareperiodsoftimewherethingsmaybecalmer,butthosetimesarefollowedbyabuild­upof

tensionandabuse,whichusuallyresultsintheabuserpeakingwithintensifiedabuse.Thecyclethen

oftenstartstorepeat,commonlybecomingmoreandmoreintenseastimegoeson.Eachrelationship

isdifferentandnoteveryrelationshipfollowstheexactpattern.Someabusersmaycyclerapidly,others

overlongerstretchesoftime.Regardless,abuserspurposefullyusenumeroustacticsofabusetoinstill

fearinthevictimandmaintaincontroloverthem.

P AGE 9

D OMESTIC ABUSE

PROTECTION ORDER

A step-by-step guide to apply for a protection order. Step 1: Gather Evidence

Take note of all the occurrences of domestic violence committed against you or your children on paper. Be clear with dates and times.to apply for a protection order. Step 1: Gather Evidence Obtain all the relevant details of

Obtain all the relevant details of the person whom you want to be protected against, including his/her home and work addresses, telephone numbers and identity number.or your children on paper. Be clear with dates and times. Ensure you have your identity

Ensure you have your identity document.and work addresses, telephone numbers and identity number. You don’t have to, but it will help

You don’t have to, but it will help if you also have:

Photos of the physical abuse. If you can, take photos so you can show how

Photos of the physical abuse. If you can, take photos so you can show how you were hurt and give the magistrate a better idea of how you have suffered.

A photo of the abuser. It can be a photocopy of a photo. This is

A

photo of the abuser. It can be a photocopy of a photo. This is useful so that the

police can recognise the abuser when they serve him/her with the protection order.

Papers showing who bought the items . If your goods or property were damaged.

Papers showing who bought the items. If your goods or property were damaged.

Photos of the violence. If any goods or property were damaged, photos will show the

Photos of the violence. If any goods or property were damaged, photos will show the magistrate exactly what was done.

Confirmation letters confirming the fact that you have been abused. You can get letters from

Confirmation letters confirming the fact that you have been abused. You can get letters from social workers, doctors, etc.

Statements/affidavits. From people who witnessed the abuse.

Statements/affidavits. From people who witnessed the abuse.

A J88 form completed by a doctor. The J88 form has drawings of the human

A

J88 form completed by a doctor. The J88 form has drawings of the human body

on it. After examining you, the doctor marks your injuries (bruises, wounds, etc.) on the drawings. This is powerful evidence for the court. You can obtain a J88 form from your nearest police station. If you have an interim protection order, take that along with you. If the police say they don’t have any J88 forms, ask to speak to the station commissioner. If you still can’t obtain a J88 form, report it to the clerk where you got your protection order. Take the J88 form to a doctor at a hospital or to a district surgeon. The doctor will examine your injuries and fill it out for you. Make two copies of the filled-out J88 form and return one of them to the police station to be put into your file. Keep the other copy.

P AGE 10

D OMESTIC ABUSE

PROTECTION ORDER

A step-by-step guide to apply for a protection order. Step 2: Seek Assistance

Any member of the SAPS must assist you in every way necessary, including:

giving you information about your rights;the SAPS must assist you in every way necessary, including: explaining the contents of the notice

explaining the contents of the notice that sets out your rights. This explanation must include the remedies that you have in terms of the Domestic Violence Act and your right to lay a criminal charge, if the act committed has an element of violence;including: giving you information about your rights; finding a safe place for you to stay or

finding a safe place for you to stay or helping you make arrangements to find a place; andcharge, if the act committed has an element of violence; getting you medical treatment if required.

getting you medical treatment if required.stay or helping you make arrangements to find a place; and The following persons can apply

The following persons can apply for an interim protection order with your written consent, unless you are a minor, a mentally retarded person, unconscious or if the court is satisfied that you are unable to give the required consent:

counsellors health workers police officers social workers teachers

P AGE 11

D OMESTIC ABUSE

PROTECTION ORDER

A step-by-step guide to apply for a protection order. Step 3: Apply for the interim protection order

Every magistrate’s court or High Court is a domestic violence court. To obtain the interim protection order, you need to go to the magistrate’s court in the area where you live or in which the respondent lives or where the abuse took place. Your application for the order will be made by way of a written statement (affidavit), outlining:

the facts on which the application is based;made by way of a written statement (affidavit), outlining: the nature of the order; and the

the nature of the order; andoutlining: the facts on which the application is based; the name of the police station where

the name of the police station where you are likely to report any breach of the order.which the application is based; the nature of the order; and Where the application is brought

Where the application is brought on your behalf by another person, the affidavit must state:

• the grounds on which they have a material interest in your wellbeing;

• their occupation and the capacity in which they bring the application;

• your written consent, except in cases as outlined above.

Once at the court, the following steps will be taken:

You fill in an application form for a protection order and write out a statement (affidavit) about the abuse.above. Once at the court, the following steps will be taken: You make a sworn statement

You make a sworn statement to the clerk that what you have written is true and you sign the application form.order and write out a statement (affidavit) about the abuse. The clerk signs and stamps your

The clerk signs and stamps your application form, opens a file for you and puts your papers into your file.you have written is true and you sign the application form. The clerk gives your file

The clerk gives your file to the magistrate who reads through your application. The magistrate can either:opens a file for you and puts your papers into your file. dismiss your application if

dismiss your application if there is no evidence that domestic violence is taking place;reads through your application. The magistrate can either: grant an interim (temporary) protection order in your

grant an interim (temporary) protection order in your favour, to be finalised on a date provided by the court where the respondent will have a chance to give his/her side of the story; orthere is no evidence that domestic violence is taking place; postpone the matter without granting an

postpone the matter without granting an interim protection order and provide a date when the respondent will get a chance to give his/her side of the story.be finalised on a date provided by the court where the respondent will have a chance

P AGE 12

D OMESTIC ABUSE

PROTECTION ORDER

A step-by-step guide to apply for a protection order. Step 4: Serve the interim protection order

If the magistrate grants you an interim protection order, the following will happen:

The clerk notifies you of the return date, when you will need to go back to court, and gives you a case number.you an interim protection order, the following will happen: The magistrate then issues a notice to

The magistrate then issues a notice to appear in court and the respondent is informed that an application for an interim protection order was granted and that he/she must appear on the return date to give his/her side of the story.will need to go back to court, and gives you a case number. The clerk files

The clerk files the original application and interim protection order forms into your file and hands you three copies. Two of the copies are for the sheriff or the police, depending on who will serve the interim protection order on the respondent. The clerk will also give you a return of service form to take to the police or sheriff.appear on the return date to give his/her side of the story. You get the police

You get the police or sheriff to serve the interim protection order. Please note that when the police serve the order it is done at no charge, however, when the sheriff serves the order, you will have to pay.a return of service form to take to the police or sheriff. The police or sheriff

The police or sheriff visits the address that you have put on your form and serves a copy of the interim protection order on the respondent. It is crucial that the respondent is informed personally of the application and return date. The police or sheriff fills in the return of service form and returns it to the court when the interim protection order has been served on the respondent.when the sheriff serves the order, you will have to pay. It is important to note

It is important to note that an interim protection order has no force until it is served on the respondent. Once the interim protection order is granted and served on the respondent, you will be able to have the respondent arrested if he/she disobeys it. Breaching any of the conditions set out in the order can result in the respondent receiving either a fine or a prison sentence, or both. When the court grants an interim protection order, it simultaneously issues a warrant of arrest against the respondent. The warrant of arrest is suspended subject to compliance with any condition, prohibition or obligation in terms of the interim protection order.

P AGE 13

D OMESTIC ABUSE

PROTECTION ORDER

A step-by-step guide to apply for a protection order. Step 5: Make the order final

If the respondent does not appear in court on the day of the hearing, the protection order will be made final. If the respondent does appear, the court will hear evidence from you, the respondent and any other witnesses that may have been called. The court will then consider all the evidence put before it in order to make a decision.

In terms of the Domestic Violence Act, these proceedings are held in private. The only people that may be present are the parties involved, their legal representatives, anyone who has brought an application on your behalf, witnesses and the officers of court. You may also bring three people to provide you with support. The court has the power to exclude anyone from the proceedings. The Act also prohibits the publication of any information that may directly or indirectly reveal the identity of any party to the proceedings.

When the magistrate has heard all the evidence, he/she will decide whether or not to issue the protection order.

P AGE 14

D OMESTIC ABUSE

PROTECTION ORDER

B reaching a Protection order

Breaching a protection order is an offence. If the respondent breaches the protection order, in terms of the Domestic Violence Act the complainant must file an affidavit with the SAPS. Everything the complainant says in the affidavit is under oath and, therefore, has to be the truth. If the complainant wilfully lies under oath or makes a false statement, he/she may be criminally charged in terms of the Act, and could face a two-year prison sentence if convicted. Where threats of death or injury have been made and where a respondent’s state of mind or mental condition warrants it, a court must order the seizure of any arms or dangerous weapons in the possession or under the control of the respondent.

On receipt of the affidavit, the police will arrest the respondent if there are reasonable grounds to suspect that the complainant may suffer imminent harm as a result of the alleged contravention. In circumstances where the police feel there are insufficient grounds for arresting the respondent, they will charge the respondent with breaching the protection order and notify him/her to appear in court on a specific date, at a specified time.

Once such a charge is laid, a prosecutor may not refuse to institute prosecution or withdraw the matter without the consent of the director of public prosecutions. If the respondent is found guilty of violating the protection order, a fine or imprisonment for a period not exceeding five years, or both, may be imposed.

Once the respondent has been arrested for breaching the protection order, the complainant may not decide to withdraw the charges. The senior public prosecutor has sole discretion to withdraw charges.

P AGE 15

D OMESTIC ABUSE

PROTECTION ORDER

F requently Asked Questions

Forhowlongisaprotectionordervalid?

Protectionorders,oncegranted,neverexpire.

Mayaprotectionorderbevaried,withdrawnorsetaside?

Aprotectionordermaybevaried,withdrawnorsetasideifthecomplainantmakesanapplication

forvariationorrescission,butonlyifthecourtissatisfiedthattheapplicationisbeingmadefreely

andvoluntarily.Ifyouwanttowithdrawyourapplicationforaninterimprotectionorderorhavea

finalprotectionordercancelledyoumustapplytothecourtinawrittenaffidavit.Thecourtwill

considertheapplicationbutisnotobligedtowithdrawtheprotectionorder.Thecourtmayrefuse

towithdrawifitbelievesthatyouoryourchildrenrequireprotection.Themagistratemakesthe

finaldecisionaboutthewithdrawalandnottheclerkofthecourt.

Oncewithdrawn,canonere­apply?

Youcanre­applyforaprotectionorderasmanytimesasyouwant,butdon’twastethecourt’s

timebyapplyingforaprotectionorderwhennogroundsexist.

Cantherespondenthavetheprotectionordersetaside?

Therespondentcanapplytohavetheinterimprotectionordersetaside.Therespondentmayalso

anticipatethedateofthecourthearingon24­hours’notice.Whatthismeansisthatarespondent

canserveanoticeonthecomplainantthatthematterbearguedearlierthanthedatesettomake

theprotectionorderfinal.Anoticewillthenbeservedonthecomplainantinthesamewaythatthe

interimprotectionorderwasservedontherespondent.Thecomplainantwillbegivenadateand

timetoappearincourtandthemagistratewillhearevidencefrombothsidesbeforedeciding

whethertomaketheorderfinalortosetitaside.

Whathappenswhenthepartiesreconcile?

Wherearespondentisinvitedbacktothepremisesbythecomplainant,thecourtwillfindthatthe

complainanthaswaivedrelianceandthepresenceoftherespondentis,therefore,nolonger

unlawful.Wheretherespondentisprohibitedfromhavingcontactwiththecomplainant,andthe

complainantinitiatescontact,aconvictioncannotfollow.

P AGE 16

D OMESTIC ABUSE

PROTECTION ORDER

F requently Asked Questions

Canaprotectionorderbeusedtoprohibitcontactwithchildren?

TheDomesticViolenceActmaynotbeexploitedormanipulatedtogainatacticaladvantagein

divorcelitigationandcustodybattles.ThewidedefinitionofdomesticviolenceintheActmakesit

easyforamaliciousandvindictivecomplainanttocauseaninnocentrespondenttobearrested.It

furthermorerendersexploitationandmanipulationoftheActbyattorneystogainanunfair

advantageovertheiropponentsindivorcematters.Thereisanexactingdutyofcareonlegal

representativesrepresentingcomplainantsinDomesticViolenceActapplicationstoensurethat

theprovisionsoftheActarenotabusedtoobtainreliefulteriortothatforwhichtheActwas

intended.

TheHighCourthasthepowerasupperguardianofallminorchildrentoannulaninterim

protectionordergrantedinamagistrate’scourtintermsoftheAct,whereitisinthebestinterests

ofthechildren.Inoneparticularcase,thecustodianparentwasusingtheinterimprotectionorder

todenytheotherparentaccesstothechildrenintermsofanothercourtorder.Thecourtfound

thatitwasnevertheintentionofthelegislaturewhenenactingtheDomesticViolenceActto

removetheinherentcommonlawpowersoftheHighCourt.

Whatifthereisachangeinthewaythecomplainantisbeingabused?

Onreceivingaprotectionorder,therespondentmayrealisethathe/shecannotabusethe

complainantinthewaysdescribedintheorder,somayresorttoabusinginotherways.Ifthis

happens,thecomplainanthastogobacktothecourttovarytheprotectionorder.

Canacourtawardlegalcostsinadomesticviolenceapplicationagainstaparty?

IntermsoftheAct,acourtmayonlymakeanorderastocostsagainstanypartyifitissatisfied

thatsuchpartyhasactedfrivolously,vexatiouslyorunreasonably.

Canarespondentclaimdamagesinrespectofmaliciousinstitutionofproceedingsagainst

him/herintermsoftheAct?

Yes,acourtmayawarddamagessustainedbyarespondent.Themaliciousinstitutionof

proceedingsintrinsicallyimpactsinjuriouslyonarespondent’sdignityinthebroadsense.If

applicantcomplainantmakesdefamatoryuntruestatementsinanapplicationfordomestic

violence,he/shemaybesuedfordefamation.

P AGE 17

D OMESTIC ABUSE

PROTECTION ORDERS

P rotection Orders and the South African Police

TheSAPShascertainobligationstovictimsofdomesticviolence.Besidestheirlegaldutyto

assistvictimstotakestepstoprotectthemselvesintermsoftheAct,thepolicemust:

•providevictimswithmedicalattention;

•providevictimswithshelter;

•providevictimswithcounselling;

•ensurethatamedicalofficercollectsandrecordsanymedicalevidenceinsupportofacriminal

charge;and

•accompanythevictimhometocollectpersonalbelongings,ifthisisprovidedforinaprotection

order.

Onreceiptofadomesticviolencecomplaint,wide­rangingdutiesareimposedonboththestation

commanderandtheofficerreceivingthecomplaint.Theseincludethedutytoinvestigatethe

complaintandtocollateallinformationinconnectionwithit.Therespondingofficerhasadutyto

rendergeneralassistancetothecomplainant,andspecifically,whereacomplaintismade,to

openadocketandtoregisteritforinvestigationor,wherenocomplaintismade,toassistthe

complainanttomakesuchacomplaint.

Thisassistancemustberecordedintheoccurrencebookandintheofficer’spocketbook.A

notice,attachedasForm1totheregulations,mustbehandedtothecomplainantinthelanguage

ofhis/herchoice.Thisnoticedetailsthecomplainant’srighttolayachargeortoapplyfora

protectionorderorboth.

Thecomplainantmustbeadvisedontheoptionsavailabletohim/herintermsoftheDomestic

ViolenceAct.Thisincludesinformingthevictimthatitisnotnecessarytolayachargebefore

applyingforaprotectionorder.Thedifferencebetweenthetwomustbeexplained:achargeis

aimedatsecuringaconvictionwhereasthepurposeofaprotectionorderistopreventfuture

misconduct.

P AGE 18

D OMESTIC ABUSE

PROTECTION ORDERS

P rotection Orders and the South African Police

Failuretoassist

Shouldapoliceofficerfailtoadequatelyadvisethevictim,thevictimcanreportthemattertothe

stationcommanderattherelevantpolicestation.Thecomplaintwillbenotedinacomplaints

register,statingthenameoftheofficerconcerned,thedateonwhichthecomplaintislodged,and

thedetailsofthecomplaint.Thestationcommanderwilltakedisciplinarystepsagainsttheofficer

involved,andtheSAPSwillreferthecomplainttotheIndependentComplaintsDirectorate(ICD)

fortheirrecommendations.Ifyouarenotsatisfiedwiththewayinwhichastationcommanderis

dealingwithyourcomplaint,youmaypersonallyreportthemattertotheICD.

Claimingdamagesfromthepolice

Inanumberofcases,victimsofdomesticabusehavesuccessfullysuedtheMinisterofSafety

andSecurityfordamagesbasedonthepolice’sfailuretoperformtheirlegaldutytoassistvictims

toprotectthemselvesundertheAct.

TheActandtheNationalInstructionsonDomesticViolencerequirethepolicetoadvisevictimsof

theirrightsandtoassisttheminassertingtheserights,wherenecessary.TheActcontainsalistof

rightsandremediesavailabletovictimsofdomesticviolencethatisderivedfromtheconstitutional

dutyimposedonthestatebytheConstitutiontoprotecttherightofeverycitizentobefreefrom

privateordomesticviolence.ThepreambletotheActdeclaresthatitsobjectiveisto‘affordthe

victimsofdomesticviolencethemaximumprotectionfromdomesticabusethatthelawcan

provide’.

P AGE 19

D OMESTIC ABUSE

PROTECTION ORDERS

F ORMS

Form1:Noticetocomplainantinacaseofdomesticviolence[J471]­English

Form1:Noticetocomplainantinacaseofdomesticviolence[J471]­Afrikaans

Form2:ApplicationforProtectionOrder[J480]­English

Form2:ApplicationforProtectionOrder[J480]­Afrikaans

Form2:ApplicationforProtectionOrder[Regulation4]­isiNdebele­isiXhosa­isiZulu­siSwati­

Sepedi­Sesotho­Setswana­Tshivenda­Xitsonga

Form3:Informationnoticetocomplainant[J506]­English

Form4:InterimProtectionOrder[J507]­English

Form5:NoticetoRespondenttoshowcause(submitresponse)whyaprotectionordershould

notbeissued[523]­English

Form5:NoticetoRespondenttoshowcause(submitresponse)whyaprotectionordershould

notbeissued­Afrikaans

Form6:ProtectionOrder[J551]­English

Form6:[J551]ProtectionOrder[Regulation8(a)]­Afrikaans

Form7:ProtectionOrder(nointerimprotectionorderissued)[J566]­English

Form8:WarrantofArrest[J590]­English

Form9:Affidavitforpurposesoffurtherwarrantofarrest[J591]­English

Form10:Affidavitregardingcontraventionofprotectionorder[J608]­English

Form11:Noticetoappearbeforecourt[J645]­English

Form12:Applicationforvariationorsettingasideofprotectionorder[J649]­English

Form13:Noticeofvariationorsettingasideofprotectionorder[J653]­English

THEFOLLOWINGFORMSAREISSUEDBYCOURTOFFICIALSONLY

Form3:Informationnoticetocomplainant[J506][Regulation5]

Form4:InterimProtectionOrder[J507][Regulation6]

Form8:WarrantofArrest[J590][Regulation9]

Form13:Noticeofvariationorsettingasideofprotectionorder[J653][Regulation14(1)]

P AGE 18

D OMESTIC ABUSE

Domestic Violence

H elpful Contact Numbers

FAMSAhasofficesnationwideandgivescounsellingtotheabusedandtheirfamilies.Tofind

yournearestFAMSAbranch,call0119757101,emailnational@famsa.org.zaorvisittheir

websitewww.famsa.org.za.

Lifelineprovides24­hourcounsellingservices.CalltheSANationalCounsellingLineon0861

322322.

PeopleOpposingWomenAbuseorPOWAprovidestelephonic,counsellingandlegalsupport towomenexperiencingabuse.POWAalsoaccompanieswomentocourtandassiststhemin

fillingoutdocuments.CallthePOWAhelplineon0837651235orvisitwww.powa.co.za.

LegalAidSouthAfricaofferslegalassistance.TolocateyournearestJusticeCentre,call0861

053425orvisitwww.famsa.org.za.

RapeCrisisoffersfreeconfidentialcounsellingtopeoplewhohavebeenrapedorsexually

assaulted.Call0116424345.

SAPS10111

Universitycampuslawclinicsalsoofferlegalassistance.

Formoreinformationonlegislationdealingwithdivorce,separationandfamilylawortoobtain

copiesoftherelevantformsneededgotohttp://www.divorcelaws.co.za.