A pioneer in the creation of specialized domestic violence courts, the Center works to rethink and improve court responses to intimate partner violence.
Domestic violence can involve physical, emotional, financial, and sexual abuse and require litigants to participate in multiple cases in many courtrooms before many judges.
Reflecting this complexity, domestic violence courts can be civil, criminal, coordinated (involving enhanced communication between the civil and criminal courts), or integrated (one judge hears all cases, civil and criminal, involving the victim and family). The emphasis in all models is on ensuring informed judicial decision-making, consistent handling of protective orders, and individualized responses. Domestic violence courts feature a dedicated judge or judges, on-site victim advocacy, ongoing monitoring and judicial supervision, and a coordinated response to domestic violence emphasizing increased collaboration among criminal justice agencies and community-based social services.
The Center for Court Innovation helped develop the integrated court model. The video below explains how the Integrated Domestic Violence Court in Manhattan, N.Y., promotes greater victim safety and makes it easier to connect litigants to services and monitor compliance with court orders.
Our Domestic Violence team provides intensive, one-on-one assistance in the planning, implementation, and enhancement of domestic violence courts. Our planning toolkit offers practical, step-by-step instructions for all phases of the planning process, including:
- creation of a planning team;
- development of a work plan;
- design of a data-collection and needs-assessment strategy;
- system-mapping and analysis of current domestic violence case-flow and caseload;
- community resource assessment.
To receive a copy of the planning toolkit and to get more information about the kinds of support we provide, contact us.