Enforcement of forced marriage protection orders
Enforcement of forced marriage protection orders

The following Family practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Enforcement of forced marriage protection orders
  • Breach of a forced marriage protection order
  • Arrest under warrant
  • Proceedings following arrest
  • Committal

From 16 June 2014, when sections 120–121 of the Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014 (ABCPA 2014) came into effect:

  1. breach of a forced marriage protection order (FMPO) became an offence

  2. forced marriage became an offence

Changes have been made to the Family Law Act 1996 (FLA 1996) including the repeal of section 63H, which allowed the courts to attach a power of arrest to an FMPO.

Breach of a forced marriage protection order

A person commits a criminal offence if they:

  1. use violence, threats or any other form of coercion for the purpose of causing another person to enter into a marriage, and

  2. believe, or ought reasonably to believe, that the conduct may cause the other person to enter into the marriage without free and full consent

In relation to a victim who lacks capacity (within the meaning of the Mental Capacity Act 2005) to consent to marriage, the offence under ABCPA 2014, s 121(1) is capable of being committed by any conduct carried out for the purpose of causing the victim to enter into a marriage (whether or not the conduct amounts to violence, threats or any other form coercion).

See Practice Note: Forced marriage protection orders.

From 16 June 2014, following amendments made by ABCPA 2014 to FLA 1996, an offence is also now committed if someone without reasonable excuse does anything that they are

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