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Law on Prevention of Domestic Violence (2010)

unofficial translation
OSCE Office in Baku

The Law of the Republic of Azerbaijan

On Prevention of Domestic Violence


This Law defines and regulates actions aimed at prevention from violence committed through abuse of close relative relations, or current or past cohabitation and its negative legal, medical and social outcomes; provision of legal assistance and social protection of persons aggrieved from domestic violence; as well as eradication of conditions giving rise to domestic violence.


Chapter I. GENERAL PROVISIONS

Article 1 
GENERAL CONDİTİONS
Basic Definitions

1.0. The Law uses the following definitions:

1.0.1. “Domestic violence” - means a deliberate infliction of physical and moral damage by persons to others, covered under this Law, caused by abuse of close relative relations, current or past cohabitation; 

1.0.2 A person aggrieved from domestic violence (hereinafter referred to as “aggrieved person”) - is a person who has been suffered physically or morally as a result of the deliberate actions against him/her, envisaged in Articles 1.0.3 – 1.0.6 of this Law, by a member of person’s family living together, a close relative, a person cohabiting in an informal marriage or a person previously cohabitated with him/her.

1.0.3. “Domestic physical violence” - denotes deliberate use of physical action by persons covered under this Law towards each other, i.e. using force to breach personal inviolability, beat, inflict injury or damage to health, torture, or limit the right to freedom.

1.0.4. “Domestic psychological violence” - denotes deliberate use of psychological pressure or actions aimed at producing intolerable psychological situation by persons covered under this Law towards each other; .

1.0.5. “Domestic application of illegal limitations of economic character” - means  actions by persons covered under this Law towards each other aimed at deprivation of the right to own, dispose of or use property, or obtain income, or at creating, sustaining and abusing the situation of economic dependency.

1.0.6. “Domestic sexual violence” - denotes actions of sexual character committed against will by persons covered under this Law towards each other.

1.0.7. “Prevention of domestic violence” -means legal, social and deterrent measures performed to remove the threat of domestic violence.

1.0.8. “Support centres” - are public and non-governmental institutions established for provision of legal, medical, psychological, social and other assistance to aggrieved persons;

1.0.9. “Protective order” - denotes an act of limitations applied on contingent actions of the person who committed domestic violence against the aggrieved person.

Article 2.  Legislation of the Republic of Azerbaijan on Prevention of Domestic Violence

The legislation of the Republic of Azerbaijan Republic on Prevention of Domestic Violence consists of the Constitution of the Republic of Azerbaijan, international agreements that the Republic of Azerbaijan is a party to, the present Law and other normative legal acts.


Article 3.   Main Principles in the Field of Prevention of Domestic Violence

3.0.  Main principles of prevention of domestic violence comprise the following:

3.0.1.  provision of basic human rights and freedoms to everyone as stipulated by the Constitution of the Republic of Azerbaijan and the legislation of the Republic of Azerbaijan;

3.0.2.     prohibition of discrimination against women;

3.0.3.  inadmissibility of interference into anyone’s personal and family life, except for cases and limits determined in the legislation;

3.0.4. observance of confidentiality for protection of personal and family privacy; 

3.0.5.  rehabilitation of infringed rights of persons aggrieved from domestic violence;

3.0.6.  mutual cooperation of state bodies and non-governmental organizations in the field of prevention of domestic violence.

Article 4.  Persons subject to the Law

4.0. This Law applies to the following persons:

4.0.1.  close family members (husband, wife, parents, children, grandmothers, grandfathers, grandchildren, siblings, step brothers and sisters, adoptive parents and adoptees) as well as other relatives living jointly;

4.0.2.  formerly married couples cohabiting or living separately after dissolution of marriage;

4.0.3. individuals appointed guardians or foster parents, as well as persons under guardianship or in foster care;

4.0.4. men and women cohabiting in informal marriages, as well as close relatives living jointly with persons cohabiting in informal marriages.


Chapter II
PROCEDURE FOR REVIEW OF COMPLAINTS
ABOUT DOMESTIC VIOLENCE

Article 5.  State Bodies Responsible for Review of Complaints Related to Domestic Violence

5.1.  Complaints related to domestic violence are reviewed in the manner defined in the criminal-procedural legislation, in case such complaints contain information about committed or premeditated crimes.

5.2. Complaints related to domestic violence are reviewed by relevant executive authorities if such complaints do not contain elements of composition of crime. The procedure of reviewing the complaints related to domestic violence with absence of elements of composition of crime is defined by relevant executive authorities.

Article 6.  Examination of Complaints about Domestic Violence

6.1.  The following are considered as grounds for conducting an examination related to domestic violence: 

6.1.0. a complaint by an aggrieved person or his/her family members;

6.1.2. a petition received from natural or legal persons, state and local self-government authorities, including educational or health institutions, non-government organizations, means of mass media;

6.2.  Complaints about cases of committing domestic violence received by officials of state and local self-government authorities, commissions for affairs and protection of rights of juveniles, guardian and foster care bodies, educational and health institutions, and support centres during performance of their official duties shall be submitted to relevant executive authorities defined in Article 5 of this Law.

6.3. Complaints related to domestic violence are reviewed only with consent of an aggravated person or his/her legal representative if such complaints do not contain elements of composition of crime;

Article 7.  Measures to be Taken along with Criminal Prosecution where the Crimes Related to Domestic Violence Examined as Defined in the Criminal-Procedural Legislation

7.0.  After confirmation of the information related to domestic violence, along with duties related to prosecution of crimes defined in the relevant legislation, the measures to be taken shall be as follows:

7.0.1. provide an aggrieved person with immediate medical aid, temporary shelter in a support centre, clothing and food at public expense, as well as forward information about the aggrieved person to the relevant executive authority for conducting a course of psychological  rehabilitation;


7.0.2. clarify circumstances that have caused to provoke domestic violence, and take measures to preclude them;

7.0.3  ensure prevention of violence and its non-recurrence, and provide for security of the aggrieved person during the examination;

7.0.4. assist in normalization of relations between parties and resumption of family affairs during the period of examination;

7.0.5.  ensure registration with preventive purposes of persons who have committed domestic violence, and conduct educational and deterrent works with them;

7.0.6.  explain to family members suffering from domestic violence their rights and the use of remedies established by the state and determined by this Law;

7.0.7. make a decision about issuance of a protective order as established hereunder;

7.0.8. if grounds for initiation of criminal case have not been defined as a result of examination of a complaint related to domestic violence, forward the complaint to the relevant executive authority;

7.0.9. as necessary, assist other state entities conducting examination of complaints about domestic violence.

Article 8.  Duties of the State Related to Domestic Violence Not Examined as Defined in the Criminal-Procedural Legislation

8.0. Duties of the state related to domestic violence not examined as defined in the criminal-procedural legislation consist of provision of the following:

8.0.1. accept the information received in relation with domestic violence in the manner determined by law, register it, carry out examination of the information in the shortest time feasible, in relevant cases, conduct examination immediately on spot, and hear parties separately;

8.0.2. if a complaint received contains information indicating information about committed or premeditated crime, forward the complaint further accordingly;

8.0.3. explain to a complainant his/her rights and the matter of responsibility for persons committing domestic violence as well as the procedure for bringing a suit to the court;

8.0.4. take measures to prevent repetition of actions causing the complaint and violence;

8.0.5. take measures to provide for security of the aggrieved person during the period of examination;

8.0.6. as necessary, provide legal assistance to the aggrieved person, provide him/her with shelter in a public support centre, clothing and food, medical and psychological aid, and to take measures to provide him/her with education, a job, vocational retraining and to ensure his/her social protection;

8.0.7. take actions to protect rights and legal interests of juveniles suffering from domestic violence;

8.0.8.  assist in normalization of relations between parties and resumption of family affairs;

8.0.9. serve a person who has committed domestic violence a warning of non-recurrence, and control execution of this warning;

8.0.10. take actions related to calling the persons to account who committed domestic violence;

8.0.11. take actions to issue a protective order to an aggrieved person;

8.0.12. organize actions stipulated in Article 13 of this Law;

8.0.13. establish a databank and organize collection of statistic information related to domestic
violence, considering the requirements of legislation on confidentiality of information;

8.0.14. implement normative regulation in relation to activities of non-governmental support
centres and provide their accreditation;

8.0.15. co-operate with international and non-governmental organizations in the field of
prevention of domestic violence;

8.0.16. render assistance to other state entities in their actions in the field of prevention of
domestic violence.

Article 9.  Decision on Results of Examination of Complaints on Domestic Violence in the Manner Envisaged in Article 5.2 of this Law 

9.0.  One of the following decisions shall be made depending on the results of the examination of the complaints in the Manner Envisaged in Article 5.2 of this Law:

9.0.1. serve a person who has committed actions associated with domestic violence a warning of non-recurrence with explanation of responsibility established by law and give  a short-term protective order to the aggrieved person

9.0.2.  apply to the court for termination or restriction of parental rights of a person who has committed actions associated with domestic violence in the manner established by law;

9.0.3. apply to competent state authorities for bringing a person whose actions contain corpus delicti or material elements of an administrative offence to criminal or administrative account in the manner established by law;

9.0.4. apply to the court to issue a long-term protective order to an aggrieved person;

9.0.5.  provide an aggrieved person with shelter in a support centre.

Article 10.   Protective order)  

10.1 A short-term or long-term protective order may be issued to an aggravated person of domestic violence in accordance with this Law. 
10.2.  Short-term protective order may forbid a person who has committed domestic violence to: 

10.2.1 commit violence again;

10.2.2. search for an aggrieved person if his/her whereabouts are unknown to him/her;

10.2.3. take other actions causing nuisance to an aggrieved person;

10.3.  Long-term protective order may include the following along with specified in Article 10.1. of this Law:

10.3.1. rules for the communication of a person who has committed actions associated with domestic violence with his/her under-age children;

10.3.2. rules for the use of accommodation or shared property;

10.3.3. terms for covering expenses related to medical and legal assistance rendered to an aggrieved person by a person who has committed domestic violence;

10.3.4. information on explanation regarding the responsibility for non-compliance with the protective order in accordance with legislation.

10.4.  A protective order is executed in the manner established by the legislation related to execution of court orders.  An individual failing to comply with a protective order bears criminal responsibility in the manner established by the legislation regarding non-compliance with court orders.

Article 11.  Warning of non-recurrence of domestic violence and issuance of short-term protective orders  
  

11.1.   If actions of such person do not amount to criminal responsibility, but infringe the rights and legal interests of an aggrieved person, the relevant executive authority may serve a written warning of non-recurrence of these or similar actions to a person who has committed domestic violence and issue short-term protective order to an aggrieved person;
11.2.  The relevant executive authority shall serve a warning to the person who committed a domestic violence within 24 hours of application and immediately shall issue a short-term protective order to an aggravated person for a period of 30 days. A complaint may be lodged at the court about issuance of a warning.

11.3.  Disregard for the short-term protective order’s requirements by a person who has committed actions associated with domestic violence may be the grounds for issuing a long-term protective order.

Article 12.  Rules for Issuance of Long-term Protective Order

12.1.  If a person who has committed actions associated with domestic violence disregards a warning of non-recurrence, an aggrieved person or the relevant executive authority is entitled to apply to the court for obtaining a long-term protective order.

12.2.  A long-term protective order is effective for a period of 30 to 180 days. A court decision on the issue of a long-term protective order is made in the manner determined by the legislation.

12.3.  To prevent disclosure of the parties’ personal and family secrets as well as to support interests of juveniles, a case about issuance of a long-term protective order may be heard at a closed session of the court in the manner established by law.


12.4.  A decision on the issuance of a long-term protective order comes into force and its term is counted in accordance with legislation. A decision to issue a protective order is forwarded for execution in accordance with legislation.

12.5.  A decision about issuance of a protective order may be disputed by lodging a complaint with the court in the manner established by law.  An appeal to a court of higher instance shall not cease the execution of the decision about the protective order.

12.6.  Each party shall be provided with a copy of the long-term protective order on the day it is issued.

 

Chapter III

PREVENTIVE ACTIONS AGAINST DOMESTIC VIOLENCE

Article 13. Types of Preventive Actions against Domestic Violence

13.1. Preventive actions against domestic violence comprise the following types:

13.1.1. legal actions, i.e. examination of cases of domestic violence, and calling persons who have committed domestic violence to account;

13.1.2. social actions, i.e. actions concerning social protection of aggrieved persons suffered from domestic violence, including provision at public expense of temporary shelter, legal and medical assistance and socially-oriented measures;

13.1.3. informative actions, i.e. raising awareness of negative legal, medical and social consequences of domestic violence to the public and other public education activities related to prevention of domestic violence.

13.2. State programs are adopted with respect to preventive actions against domestic violence conducted by the relevant executive authority.  

Article 14: Legal Actions in the Field of Prevention of Domestic Violence

14.0. Legal actions in the fields of prevention of domestic violence comprise the following:

14.0.1. criminal prosecution related to domestic violence;

14.0.2. calling persons to account who have committed domestic violence;

14.0.3. protection of the rights, freedoms and legal interests of aggrieved persons, provision
for their security during the course of the examination;

14.0.4. legal assistance to aggrieved persons at public expense;

14.0.5. execution of court decisions regarding cases of domestic violence;

14.0.6. supervision of execution of a warning issued with regard to domestic violence;

14.0.7. termination or restriction of parental rights of persons who have committed
actions associated with domestic violence in the manner established by law;

14.0.8. collection of statistical data on domestic violence;

14.0.9. ensuring confidentiality of domestic violence information in the manner established by
law;

14.0.10. execution of normative regulation of activities of non-governmental support centres
and their accreditation;

Article 15.  Social Actions in the Field of Prevention of Domestic Violence

15.0. Social actions in the field of prevention of domestic violence comprise the following:

15.0.1. organization of social protection of aggrieved persons, assistance to them in obtaining
relevant documents and social allowances in the manner determined in the legislation;

15.0.2. assistance to aggrieved persons in continuing education;

15.0.3. assistance to aggrieved persons in finding employment and their vocational retraining;

15.0.4. medical aid to aggrieved persons at public expense;

15.0.5. organization of psychological rehabilitation courses for aggrieved persons;

15.0.6. establishment of support centres for aggrieved persons;

15.0.7. measures to provide social care to aggrieved children;

15.0.8. other measures for protection of aggrieved persons.

Article 16.  Informative Actions in the Field of Prevention of Domestic Violence

16.1.  Informative actions related to domestic violence aim to prevent domestic violence, establish normal relations in the families, and eradicate circumstances that give rise to domestic violence and negative legal, medical and social consequences they cause. 

16.2.  Informative actions in the field of prevention of domestic violence comprise the following:

16.2.1. public education activities against domestic violence;

16.2.2. raise awareness of circumstances that give rise to domestic violence and negative legal, medical and social consequences they cause;

16.2.3. raise awareness of means used to prevent domestic violence;

16.2.4. promotion family relations based on high culture and mutual respect among population;

16.2.5. examination and analysis of circumstances that give rise to domestic violence, elaboration of programs and recommendations aimed at prevention of domestic violence, organization of educational activities;

16.2.6. registration with preventive purposes of persons who have committed domestic violence and conducting discipline-preventive work with them;

16.2.7. explaining of responsibility for committing domestic violence defined in the law;

16.2.8. serving a warning of non-recurrence to persons who have committed domestic violence;

16.2.9. conducting surveys on domestic violence;

16.3. guidelines for registration with preventive purposes of persons who have committed domestic violence and conducting discipline-preventive work with them shall be determined by the relevant executive authority.

Article 17.  Ensuring Confidentiality in Assisting Aggrieved Persons

17.1.  A fact of domestic violence against an individual as well as personal and family information obtained while rendering assistance to aggrieved persons is considered confidential.

17.2.  Confidentiality of information obtained during the examination of domestic violence complaints, collection of statistical data on domestic violence and rendering assistance to aggrieved persons as well as prevention of disclosure of personal and family secrets shall be guaranteed.  

17.3.  Confidentiality of domestic violence related information collected in a databank is ensured by the relevant executive authority maintaining the databank. Domestic violence information may be disclosed only in cases and guidelines provided in the legislation. Statistical data on domestic violence shall be disclosed on the anonymous basis.   

17.4. Officials who failed to ensure confidentiality in examination of domestic violence complaints bear responsibility in accordance with law.

Article 18. Domestic Violence Databank

18.1.  The domestic violence databank is created by the relevant executive authority.

18.2. The databank includes information on occurrence of cases of domestic violence, individuals who complained to state bodies about cases of domestic violence, examination and results of examination of cases of domestic violence, criminal and administrative offenders with regard to cases of domestic violence, court orders, including orders on termination and restriction of parental rights, as well as restoration and removal of restrictions of parental rights, information about accredited support centres and their activities, etc.

18.3.  Guidelines on organization and performance of the databank are set by the relevant executive authority.

18.4. State bodies and support centres shall provide information about cases of domestic violence to the relevant executive authority.

18.5.  The relevant executive authority shall prepare summaries and analytical documents on the basis of domestic violence information contained in the databank. 

Article 19. Support Centres

19.1. Public support centres for aggrieved persons are established by relevant executive authority. Services rendered by public support centres are free of charge.
 
19.2.  Support centres shall:

19.2.1. provide legal and medical assistance to aggrieved persons;

19.2.2. assist aggrieved persons in finding employment and their vocational retraining;


19.2.3. arrange a psychological rehabilitation course for aggrieved persons;

19.2.4. assist aggrieved persons in preparing relevant documents with respect to social protection and in obtaining social allowances;

19.2.5. provide aggrieved persons with emergency shelters;  

19.2.6. take measures to restore normalcy in families of aggrieved persons;

19.2.7. carry out informative actions with regard to domestic violence;

19.2.8. organize mutual support groups of aggrieved persons;

19.2.9. implement other activities related to social protection of aggrieved persons.

19.3.  Support centres , as necessary, shall provide shelter to juveniles suffered from domestic violence for up to three months and to other aggrieved persons for up to two months.

19.4.  Support centres may be established by local self-government authorities and non-governmental organizations. Apartments of individuals, with their consent, may be used as support centres on charity bases. 

19.5. Non-governmental support centres must be accredited by the relevant executive authority.

19.6. Guidelines for activities of support centres and accreditation procedures for non-governmental support centres are elaborated by the relevant executive authority.

Chapter IV
FINAL PROVISIONS

Article 20.  Responsibility for Violation of Law

Persons breaching provisions of this Law and other legislative acts on domestic violence bear responsibility in the manner established by law.

Ilham Aliyev
President of the Republic of Azerbaijan
 
Baku, 22 June 2010

 


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