Domestic Abuse: Couple told to ‘get re-housed or move on’

woman in white dress shirt and black pants sitting on gray couch possibly victim of domestic abuse or divorce

7 September 2021

A judge has warned a combative couple that they will have to “sit down now and get re-housed or move on”. This is the latest in a long running saga in a domestic abuse case in Ireland.

The couple, who have been married for over forty years, have separate protection orders against one another for domestic abuse/violence. They have previously given statements in court that neither is allowed to enter the other’s bedroom or bathroom in the home that they share.

Breach of Domestic Violence Order

The husband now alleges that his wife has breached a domestic violence order, which brought them both before the Family Court once again after repeat applications previously filed by the couple against one another.

However, Judge Mark Larkin warned that the court was no longer going to tolerate the on goings of the couple and their multiple court appearances concerning complaints against each other.

In response, the solicitor for the husband stated that “the marriage has broken down and domestic violence legislation is not going to correct it”. He further noted that there were too many internal agreements concerning who can go where and who can do what in their shared home.

“There is a shared sitting room and a shared washing machine and obviously when the washing machine doesn’t finish when it should finish for a particular person, well then…,” he said.

He added that it was a case of “’you don’t pass that door and I won’t pass that chair but when you pass that door or I pass that chair’, well then…”.

“Risk of Homelessness”

The solicitor representing the wife also claimed that the domestic abuse situation between the two had become “highly dysfunctional”, and that the issue ultimately boils down to one of housing.

“My client has inquired about alternative housing but the council require her to remove her name from the lease and to waive her interest in the property before allowing her to go on the list. That seems to me to be very unfair. She is at risk of homelessness,” she said.

Despite the circumstances, Judge Larkin maintained that the mutual belligerence and abuse between the couple was not something for the court to resolve.

“This is really wear and tear in the marriage and parties need to sit down now and get re-housed or move on,” he said.

Judge Larkin noted that the protection orders were to remain in place and adjourned the case until November.

If you have been a victim of domestic abuse, contact us now for a free assessment of your case.

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