The New Hampshire Legal Assistance Domestic Violence Advocacy Project (DVAP) represents victims and survivors of domestic abuse in domestic violence restraining order hearings, and divorce and parenting (custody) cases. We help low income victim/survivors who cannot afford to pay a lawyer. Our attorneys are trained to address the unique issues that victim/survivors face in family law cases.
There are many ways we can help including:
- Representation at final domestic violence restraining order hearings
- Providing limited or full representation in divorce cases
- Providing limited or full representation in parenting (custody) cases
- Providing help with other legal problems such as housing or public benefits
If you need legal help from DVAP, please contact your local domestic violence crisis center for a referral. An attorney from NHLA works on-site at the Crisis Center of Central New Hampshire in Concord one to two days per week and is available for appointments as needed. This “in-house” placement increases access to holistic civil legal services for low income victims/survivors in their family law cases, thereby leading to better and safer outcomes. NHLA provides on-site legal screening and offers advice and counsel to crisis center clients experiencing domestic and sexual violence and/or stalking. NHLA is committed to increasing access to civil legal services for immigrants, refugees, and limited-English proficient victims/survivors of domestic violence, as well as the traditionally underserved LGBTQ community.
To determine your eligibility for services, we encourage you to call the New Hampshire Legal Assistance local branch office nearest you, or visit www.nhlegalaid.org.
The grant, from the Legal Assistance for Victims program of the federal Office of Violence Against Women will help NHLA provide services to victims at the Manchester Community Health Center (MCHC) and Crisis Center of Central New Hampshire (CCCNH), with specific emphasis on helping survivors who come from immigrant and refugee communities.
Domestic Violence Advocacy in action: NHLA helps a domestic violence victim obtain a restraining order against her abuser.
Our client had been married to her husband for about seven years. They had been separated but were trying to reconcile. However, they got into an argument and her husband became extremely angry. She tried to get away, but he grabbed her and threatened to kill her. Terrified, she escaped and ran to her sister's house. While she was gone for the weekend, he trashed the house. When she returned there were several threatening messages on her answering machine from her husband. The next day he called the client's sister and threatened her, too. When our client called the police, they saw the bruises on both of her arms and took tapes of the phone messages, then arrested her husband.
With the representation of NHLA, she sought and received a restraining order protecting her from her husband. With her advocates' help, she overcame her fear of court hearings and her sense of hopelessness. During NHLA's cross-examination of the husband, he admitted that he had grabbed and threatened her. The court granted her a permanent restraining order, protecting the client from further abuse.
NHLA receives support from the following organizations to fund our Domestic Violence Advocacy Project:
Campaign for Legal Services
IOLTA program of New Hampshire Bar Foundation
NH Department of Justice
US Department of Justice Office on Violence Against Women