Director Helen Greenfield shares some practical tips for victims of domestic abuse.

At FLiP we understand that acknowledging and accepting that you are in an abusive relationship is one of the hardest things anyone can do. Taking the necessary steps to prevent further abuse can be even harder.

Here are some practical tips to bear in mind:

  • If there is concern for the immediate safety of you or your children, the police should be called.
  • If you are in danger and unable to talk on the phone, dial 999, listen to the questions from the operator and respond by coughing or tapping the handset if you can. Then follow the instructions depending on whether you are calling from a mobile or a landline.

If you call from a mobile:

If prompted, press 55 to make yourself heard – this will transfer your call to the police.

Pressing 55 only works on mobiles and does not allow the police to track your location.

If you call 999 from a landline:

If only background noise can be heard and BT operators cannot decide whether an emergency service is needed, then you will be connected to a police call handler.

If you replace the handset, the landline may remain connected for 45 seconds in case you pick it up again.

When 999 calls are made from landlines, information about your location should be automatically available to the call handlers to help provide a response.

  • Report any injuries suffered to your GP or to the hospital as this is independent evidence of what has been going on and can strengthen your case.
  • Keep a record of relevant events as a reminder of the history of abuse which can support any Court application.
  • Keep money available at home and essential items close at hand in the event that there is a need to leave urgently.
  • Have a telephone available to maintain contact to family, friends and emergency services.

Domestic abuse victims are able to “Ask for Ani” at pharmacies nationwide as part of a codeword scheme to indicate they need help.

At FLiP we offer a free legal advice Helpline for your queries on Domestic Abuse and Children & Parenting Law. We offer 30 minutes of free legal advice every Wednesday between the hours of 2pm and 5pm. For more information on how to get in touch, visit our advice line page here.  

For more information on how Family Law in Partnership can help you if you are faced with domestic abuse, please visit our website page Abuse in Relationships or contact director Helen Greenfield who focuses on this area of law on T: 020 7420 5000 or by email at

Helen is a member of the OnlyMums and OnlyDads Family Law Panel, offering 20 minutes of free advice for individuals in urgent need of advice. Helen’s details can be found here