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The cross-government definition of domestic violence and abuse is: any incident or pattern of incidents of controlling, coercive, threatening behaviour, violence or abuse between those aged 16 or over who are, or have been, intimate partners or family members regardless of gender or sexuality. The abuse can encompass, but is not limited to:

  • psychological
  • sexual
  • financial
  • emotional

Forced marriage is seen in the UK as a form of domestic abuse. A forced marriage is where one or both people do not (or in cases of people with learning difficulties or who are under-age, cannot) consent to the marriage and where duress is used to enforce the marriage. 

A new offence of coercive and controlling behaviour in intimate and familial relationships was introduced into the Serious Crime Act 2015. The offence will impose a maximum 5 years imprisonment, a fine or both. The offence criminalising coercive or controlling behaviour was commenced on 29 December 2015. Read the accompanying statutory guidance for further information.

If the person who is suffering domestic abuse is an adult with care and support needs, this should be considered as a safeguarding concern.

If you are the person who is being abused; a family member or carer or a concerned member of the public, please click the “Report a Concern” button at the bottom of this page.

If you are a professional or volunteer working with a person who is experiencing domestic abuse, please also refer to the Shropshire Domestic Abuse Pathway and the Safeguarding Process in Shropshire on our Multi-Agency Procedures pages .

For more information and resources on domestic abuse, please refer to the related links and documents on this page.