Thursday, January 27, 2011

Shouting at spouse is domestic violence in UK

Supreme Court said though according to the dictionary, violence means physical attack, it can apply to extreme fervour or fury

LONDON: Men and women who shout at their partners risk being thrown out of their homes under a sweeping ruling by judges on Wednesday. Raising your voice at a husband or wife, or a boyfriend or girlfriend, now counts as domestic violence under the landmark Supreme Court judgment.
   The decision also means that denying money to a partner or criticising them can count as violence and bring down draconian domestic violence penalties from the courts. The Supreme Court made its decision in the case of a woman who left her husband’s council flat and then demanded a new council home.
   She said she left because she had suffered domestic violence — even though her husband had never harmed her. Lady Hale, leading a bench of five justices, said the definition of violence must change so that a range of abusive behaviour now counts in law.
   The decision will affect domestic violence and family law which has given the courts powers to throw someone out of their home if their partner accuses them of violent behaviour. Until now violence has always had to mean physical assault. AGENCIES

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