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Domestic violence disclosure scheme – ‘Clare’s Law’


The Domestic violence disclosure scheme – ‘Clare’s Law’ became a national scheme in March 2014.

Under the scheme, an individual can ask the police to check whether a new or existing partner has a violent past (‘right to ask’). If police checks show that a person may be at risk of domestic violence from their partner, the police would consider disclosing the information. The scheme also looks at how the police can proactively release information (‘right to know’) to protect a person from domestic violence where it is lawful, necessary and proportionate to do so. Both processes can be implemented within existing legal powers.

More information about the scheme is available on the GOV.UK website, and in particular the guidance that relates to the scheme.



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  1. If your partner has already been violent towards you and you inform them of that they would tell you.
    This happened to us and they said we already knew so they wouldn’t tell us anything.
    For a confused woman who was stuck in a violent relationship this really didn’t help and made her feel like she was stupid. So don’t tell them if they have been already violent till they give you the info.

  2. my ex new partner has moved in only after a few months asked to marry her and is funny towards my daughter and gets angry against my ex and someone i know recognised him said his name and that he used to see a girl in flat above her and used to hit her can i get a check on him and should i tell my ex as i’m sure she won’t believe me ??

    1. Hi Graham

      My understanding is that Clare’s Law allows any member of the public to ask the police to check whether they hold information about an individuals previous violent or abusive behaviour. However, where a third party is making the request (i.e. you) the police will not necessarily disclosure information to you. They may believe that its more appropriate for your ex-partner to receive the information.

      I hope this is helpful.

      Best wishes


  3. Unfortunately Dom is right, some police in some forces will check what you know before disclosing information. Better to say you don’t know anything and let the police inform you. Different forces disclose at different levels of detail.

    Graham, police are only legally allowed to disclose to the person who is at risk or the person who has a legal responsibility for the person at risk. They will not disclose to a third party. The person receiving the disclosure has to sign a legally binding confidentiality agreement that prevents them sharing the information with anyone else, so please don’t pressure your ex for information about her new partner. She could be prosecuted if she shares it.

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