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Employment and Domestic Abuse

Employment and Domestic Abuse

Domestic Abuse and employment lawyers know that domestic violence doesn’t just affect you at home or only impact your personal life. Domestic abuse can have a profound impact on your employment. The UK government has launched a review of employment rights for victims of domestic abuse to look at what more can be done to help them in the workplace.

Domestic violence and employment law solicitors

London based OTS Solicitors are experts in family, domestic violence and employment law. There is significant crossover between family and employment law so for advice and help with all your family and employment law questions call OTS Solicitors on 0203 959 9123 or complete our online enquiry form. Confidential appointments are available through video conferencing, Skype or by telephone.

Employment and domestic abuse review

For domestic abuse solicitors and experts it feels as if it has taken a long time for the government to recognise the impact of domestic violence on a victim’s employment and career prospects. However, maybe one of the few good things to come out of the Covid-19 global pandemic is the official acknowledgement of the effect of lockdown on those subject to domestic abuse.

There is now more hope that the problem of domestic violence in all its forms will be given the attention it deserves because:

  • The government’s Domestic Abuse Bill is making its way through parliament and when it gets royal assent there will be a statutory definition of domestic abuse. The definition of domestic violence should include emotional and financial abuse as well as coercive and controlling behaviour

  • A review into the effect of domestic violence on employment.

Some may question what domestic violence has got to do with employment as after all ‘domestic’ refers to home. However, domestic violence solicitors, employment law solicitors (whether acting for employer or employee) and HR managers will all tell you that domestic violence and employment are intrinsically linked. For example:

  • A person who is experiencing domestic violence may need additional time off work to cope with the physical or emotional effects of the abuse. This leave is unplanned and can create staffing issues for employers 

  • A worker who is being financially controlled by their partner may be on a good salary but may not have access to their own income because of the coercive control and financial abuse that they are experiencing

  • A domestic violence victim may need to take time off work to secure family court injunction orders, such as an occupation order or a non-molestation order or to take part in criminal prosecution proceedings against the perpetrator of the domestic violence

  • As a result of domestic abuse a victim may not have the co-parenting support that other single parents enjoy and therefore may need additional time off to cope with child care issues

  • A domestic violence victim may have met their partner at work. If the HR team is aware of the domestic violence allegations how do they manage the workplace situation so that the domestic violence victim is safe at work whilst not creating complaints by the perpetrator that he or she is being discriminated against in the workplace because of the absence of a criminal conviction for domestic violence

  • A person who is subject to domestic violence in their home life may be more vulnerable to bullying within the workplace because of low self-esteem.

The government’s review of employment and domestic abuse will look at:

  • The availability of flexible working and unplanned leave for domestic abuse victims

  • What can be done to improve the workplace for victims of domestic violence

  • How employers can assist in stopping financial or economic abuse, for example, making emergency salary payments or paying a salary into a different bank account.

The review will initially involve requests for evidence and information from interested parties and look at best practice both in the UK and overseas.

At the end of the government's review into employment and domestic abuse it is hoped that the review will address questions such as:

  • What practical issues occur in relation to domestic abuse and work

  • What support can be offered by employers for victims of domestic abuse

  •  What is the best practice for employment support for those experiencing domestic violence and what more can be done, for example, training for HR staff on recognising signs of domestic violence in employees.

The review will report by the end of 2020 and domestic violence and employment law solicitors hope HR managers and those tasked with trying to balance the needs and employment rights of:

  • Employees who the employer knows are victims of domestic violence

  • Other employees who have to pick up additional work if a member of the team is frequently away on unplanned leave because of domestic violence

  • Employees who have had allegations of domestic violence made against them by a fellow employee that they are or were in a relationship with.

Domestic violence and employment law solicitors

London based OTS Solicitors are experts in family, domestic violence and employment law. If you need help with employment law (either as an employer or employee) or help with family law and domestic violence  call OTS Solicitors on 0203 959 9123 or complete our online enquiry form. Confidential appointments are available through video conferencing, Skype or by telephone.

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