Domestic Violence Disclosure Scheme (Clare's Law)

The Domestic Violence Disclosure Scheme (DVDS) was launched by the Home Office on 8 March 2014. You may have heard the scheme referred to as 'Clare's Law'

The aim of the DVDS is to enable potential victims to make an informed choice about whether to continue with a relationship if a new or current partner has a history of violence or abuse. It also aims to provide help and support to assist a potential victim when making that informed choice.

The website provides further information about the scheme and the process that police forces follow.

There is also a local briefing available, which is available if you follow this link.

There are two parts to the scheme:

'Right to ask’ 

This enables an individual to ask the police about a partner’s previous history of domestic violence or violent acts; A precedent for  such a scheme exists with the Child Sex Offender Disclosure Scheme.

'Right to know’

This enables the police to proactively disclose information in prescribed circumstances where an agency comes into the possession of information about the previous violent behaviour of a person.