• Legislation should ensure that complainants/survivors have access to advocates who will be present and advise them through the legal process, including filing for orders of protection, accompanying them to court, and filing for restitution or compensation available by statute. Legislation should provide funding for advocate services and require that advocates be trained in counseling and in domestic violence issues and in the law and practices of their country.
  • Legislation should reflect the importance of the confidentiality of the relationship between an advocate and a complainant/survivor.

Example: the Law of Georgia states that “The information on state of physical and psychological status of the victim shall be confidential and its disclosure shall be permitted only in cases provided by law.” Article 19

(See also Fuller, Rana SA, “The Importance of Confidentiality Between Domestic Violence Advocates and Domestic Violence Victims,” StopVAW)


For information on advocate/complainant/survivor privilege, see “Advocacy Guidelines,” StopVAW .

For more on the relationship of advocates and complainant/survivors, see: Davies, Jill, “When Battered Women Stay…Advocacy Beyond Leaving,” National Resource Center on Domestic Violence (2008).

"Uniform Protocol for the Management of Victims, Survivors, and Witnesses of Domestic Violence and Sexual Offences,” National Prosecuting Authority of South Africa (2005).