Domestic violence and financial abuse
Financial abuse is a form of domestic violence where a person uses money as a form of power or control over their partner.
What is financial abuse?
Financial abuse is a form of family and domestic violence, where access to money and other economic resources is controlled, exploited or sabotaged by an abusive partner.
Has your partner:
- accrued debts in your name? (e.g. credit cards, loans, bills, fines, company or tax debts)
- borrowed money they have not paid back?
- pressured you to sign a personal guarantee or make a false declaration?
- used your personal information to open an account without your permission?
- made you a director of a company that they control?
These are all signs of financial abuse.
Many people experiencing financial abuse may not recognise the signs of abuse until the relationship ends. The impacts of financial abuse can continue long after the relationship breaks down.
Financial abuse affects people of all ages and incomes. Financial abuse is not your fault. It is important to know that help is available.
Our services that can help
Redfern Legal Centre provides free and confidential advice about financial abuse. Our financial abuse team can also work with other services to help you address legal and non-legal issues related to financial abuse.
Other services that can help
Domestic violence services
- Women’s Domestic Violence Advocacy Service (WDVCAS) provides support and referrals to women seeking protection from domestic violence and navigating the court system. This free service is run by Legal Aid at locations across NSW. To contact your local WDVCAS call 1800 938 227.
- Women’s Legal Service NSW can provide advice to women on issues relating to children and family law, including child support. Call 02 8745 6988. For the Domestic Violence Legal Advice Line: call 02 8745 6999, or toll free 1800 810 784. For the First Nations Women's Legal Contact Line: call 02 8745 6977, or toll free 1800 639 784.
- 1800RESPECT. A 24-hour national sexual assault, family and domestic violence counselling line for anyone who has experienced, or is at risk of, family and domestic violence and/or sexual assault. Phone 1800 737 732 or chat online.
- NSW Domestic Violence Line. A 24-hour service providing counselling and referrals to women experiencing domestic violence. Phone 1800 65 64 63.
- Relationships Australia. Domestic violence services and support in NSW. Services include individual counselling for women and men, behavioural change and group programs, educational programs, and legal case support.
Financial counselling services
- The National Debt Helpline operates Australia wide and can put you in touch with a free financial counsellor in your local area. Phone 1800 007 007.
Housing and homelessness
- Link2Home. NSW crisis accommodation. Phone 1800 152 152.
- Lou's place. A daytime refuge centre for women. Phone 02 9358 4553.
Family law services
How to contact us
- Complete our confidential online enquiry form, or
- Call us on 0481 730 344 (Monday to Thursday between 9am and 1pm).
You can ask for a free telephone interpreter if you need one. If you leave a voicemail, please tell us your name and how we can safely contact you.
If we can’t help solve your legal or non-legal problem, we will try to refer you to another service that can.
We welcome referrals from community workers. Call us and we will be happy to discuss if we can help.
Learn more about financial abuse
RLC's financial abuse service works to improve outcomes for victim-survivors, and helps guide responses to financial abuse by government and industry. Our change-making work is supported by Ecstra Foundation.
RLC coordinates the NSW chapter of the Economic Abuse Reference Group (EARG).