Sometimes you have no grounds to put an end to a relationship aside from feeling psychologically abused. The law is on your side. Any behaviour that is not physical abuse but results in extreme psychological and emotional abuse will now be classed as a crime in accordance to section 76 of the serious crime act 2015.

Controlling or coercive behaviour can cause anyone to fear physical violence or affect their way of going about day-to-day activities. This can often happen after sustained patterns of emotional abuse which makes the victim in the relationship unstable and unable to escape their own thoughts, which have been manipulated by the perpetrator. This type of abuse is dangerous and if you feel that anyone is being subject to it, you should seek professional advice immediately.


Some forms of controlling behaviour outlines were:

The sentencing for this crime can be up to a five-year prison term. This law applies to all people who are at the time in an ‘intimate relationship’ or live together and are part of the same family or have been in an intimate relationship before. This law is not applicable to a relationship wherein which one is in the position of parental responsibility and the other is a child under 16 (This type of case would come under a child cruelty offence).

This move has been hailed as a landmark moment in trying to tackle domestic abuse. This type of abuse often slips past the net, because victims don’t always realise that they are being mistreated. Commonly physical violence is seen as the breaking point in a relationship, and it’s often overlooked if you’re simply lacking self-confidence. But this is what this law seeks to override; and give all people in a relationship the empowerment to break free from the cycle of abuse.


If you wish to seek any further legal advice around this new law, don’t hesitate to call our team

on: 0116 2999 199 or alternatively you can email us at: