Rights of Women and Legal Aid for Domestic Abuse
Rights of Women
Rights of Women is a women’s voluntary organisation committed to informing, educating and empowering women concerning their legal rights.
The organisation is based in London and was founded in 1975. They seek to influence policy by undertaking original research, preparing responses to policy documents from Government and other sources. Rights of Women organise conferences on women’s rights, and hold public meetings. They want women’s voices heard at every stage of public policy formulation.
In addition Rights of Women offer free confidential legal advice to women on through their own advice line. Their website contains a lot of useful information and a link can be found here; Link to Rights of Women Website
Challenging the rules restricting Legal Aid
Rights of Women were recently successful in being granted permission to challenge the evidence requirements often referred to as the ‘domestic violence gateway’ to legal aid in many private family law cases.
The Law Society has supported their challenge (brought by the Public Law Project on their behalf) over the lawfulness of Government changes to legal aid which are preventing victims of domestic abuse from getting legal aid for family cases, even when it is clear there has been violence, or there is an ongoing risk of violence. Rights of Women argue that this is not what parliament intended.
A full hearing is expected before the end of the year
Rights of Women have produced a number of information sheets on legal issues affecting women. You can download them here, free of charge.
The Family Law Solicitors organisation Resolution has asked its members to take part in a survey to provide addition information to support this legal challenge.
The Rights of Women Website
Is a very good resource. Here are some downloads of their fact-sheets and information about their helpline;
The information contained in their fact-sheets is not legal advice. It is information for people resident in or affected by the laws of England and Wales.
We have a contract with the Legal Aid Agency and offer Legal Aid from our office in Honiton to victims of domestic abuse. Our Family Mediation Legal Aid Contract also covers Exeter and Taunton
It is always good to gather information, but where a legal problem arises specific advice should be obtained.