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  • Important Legal Terms You Should Know About When Filing an Abuse Claim

    Published on June 15, 2021

    Are you or someone close to you in an abusive relationship or situation? Perhaps you have wanted to report the abuse and violation done to you or someone you love, yet you cannot find the courage to do so. In addition, you might feel overwhelmed to the point you are not sure what to do next.

    Going out there is a courageous task in itself, and you might feel that people will not support you or that anyone would want to defend your rights. However, fear not, as there are legal mechanisms meant to ensure protection against any violation of your person, especially if you are a victim of abuse.

    Filing an abuse claim is the first step to gaining back your freedom and your life. But first, you have to understand what rights you hold and what redress you can ask for from abusive actions against you. You can begin by knowing these legal terms and entities that will help you later when you finally decide to file your claim:

    Institutional Abuse

    Institutional abuse has many facets as it covers a wide area of where the abuse is done and who does such abusive acts. An employee or a private institution commits this. Unfortunately, due to rules and regulations, these violations towards persons have been ignored or tolerated. Authorities of such institutions tend to turn a blind eye to these allegations of abuse.

    In instances of institutional abuse, employees, supervisors, and other authorities tend to turn a blind eye towards the complaints or grievances of victims. As a result, they would often not take steps to turn in offenders, order for these employees to be dismissed, or even file actions themselves for the law to punish such people.

    The commission of this kind of abuse usually happens within the foster system, elder homes, schools, and even in the police force. Law firms specialize in handling cases for institutional abuse victims in Australia, such as Kelso Lawyers.

    Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse

    The Australian government promulgated the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse in 2013 in response to the clamor for investigation and action on behalf of victims and survivors of child sexual abuse.

    Hence, the government established a five-year inquiry led by the Royal Commission. It inquired into how institutions responsible for children respond to reports and allegations brought about by victims of sexual abuse. It also points out where systems in such organizations failed to protect the children under their care and supervision.

    National Redress Scheme

    Forwarded by the Australian parliament, the National Redress Scheme was promulgated in 2018 and is set to end in 2028. The Australian government created this in response to recommendations given by the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.

    The National Redress Scheme acknowledges that many children have been and are still sexually abused within Australian institutions. This Scheme holds these organizations accountable for the abuse endured by victims, including imposing redress compensation to abuse survivors.

    Redress Payment

    Under the National Redress Scheme, a person entitled to redress may claim monetary compensation as awarded by the Australian government. However, for the victim to fully accept the redress payment, he or she must indicate in an acceptance document that he or she wishes to be paid such.

    The amount of redress payment depends on a person’s circumstances and the extent and kind of abuse the victim has experienced. The Scheme provides guidelines under its Assessment Framework, which serves as a guide to the determination of payment that the victim is entitled to.

    Family Violence vis-a-vis Domestic Violence

    Family violence and domestic violence are often interchanged with each other. Although both are considered serious crimes, it has to be noted that these terms are separate and distinct from one another.

    Family violence is any actual violence or even a threat towards a person from their family member, which causes the victim to be fearful for their own life. Examples of family violence may be constituted by physical or sexual assault, intentional property damage, isolating and alienating an individual from friends or family, among others.

    On the other hand, domestic violence is done by a person to another person he or she is intimately involved with. Domestic violence can occur between two persons in the same household or family but is not limited to married couples or people living together. Domestic violence often consists of abuse of power over a partner, stalking and intimidation, damage to property, etc.

    Exclusion Order

    When there is an impending threat in domestic situations, but no crime has been committed yet, the police cannot act at the moment, and authorities cannot prosecute the potential perpetrator. However, through an exclusion order, lawful authorities can work even before any act of abuse is done to protect the partner, their children, or other household members.


    Knowing these legal terms and having an awareness of remedies you can avail of if you are in an abusive environment may be protected under the law’s mantle. Know that you are not alone, and you are supported in this journey to freedom and healing.


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