Legal Steps to Escaping an Abusive Marriage in South Africa

Domestic violence can be divided into 5 categories:

  1. Physical abuse
  2. Sexual abuse
  3. Emotional abuse (intimidation, economic abuse)
  4. Verbal abuse (harassment)
  5. Psychological abuse (stalking, entry without permission into a residence that is not shared, damage to property

This is not only applicable to married individuals but any abusive relationship.

Whether abuse is being committed on or to a spouse, partner or child, your best option is to get away from whoever is causing harm to you and/or your children.

If you do not contact the police you can contact the following organisations for help:

  • The Family Crisis Foundation
  • Life Line SA
  • POWA (People Opposing Women Abuse

There are steps you can follow to be protected from ongoing abuse as set by The Domestic Violence Act 116 in 1998.
How to obtain the protection order (court order) to protect you and your family:

  1. Before obtaining the order, you must receive an affidavit from a police station stating the reasons for the application, the order you are applying for (Interim Protection Order) and the name of the police station where it was obtained
  2. Once you have received your affidavit, you must apply at your local Magistrates Court at any time on any day
  3. You must complete the Form 6: Interim Protection Order. The form will be certified by a clerk to be submitted
  4. You will receive a receipt and the magistrate will send you a return date for the consideration of your application
  5. The magistrate will send a summons to the accused abuser to meet in court
  6. The court will then decide whether or not to grant your protection order on the day both abuser and abused are present in court

Let us assist you, you don’t have to suffer in silence.

Contact our offices on (012) 809 3762 or alternatively contact us via email at /