Karishma Dharni

The Domestic Violence Destitution Concession (DDVC)

If you’re making an application for indefinite leave to remain under the Domestic Violence Rule, you can access accommodation and to welfare benefits through the DDVC while you make your application.

Through the DDVC, you will be granted 3 months’ temporary leave to remain which allows you to access public funds. This means that you will be able to access a refuge place because you will be entitled to housing benefit.

This option is only for those who have come to the UK on a spouse visa and have experienced domestic abuse. You should seek advice from an immigration lawyer or your local domestic abuse service to see if you are eligible.

To apply for the DDVC, you must show that:

  • you are living in the UK
  • you are the partner of a British person or someone settled in the UK and were granted leave to remain as a spouse or partner
  • the relationship has broken down as a result of domestic abuse
  • you intend to apply for leave under the Domestic Violence Rule.

It is important to understand that this 3 months’ temporary leave replaces your spouse or partner visa. The application does not grant you any permanent right to remain, so you must submit your application for ILR under the Domestic Violence Rule before the end of the 3 months.

If you have submitted your application for ILR within the 3 months leave and the Home Office take longer than the 3 months to decide the application for ILR, then your temporary leave to remain will continue until a decision is made.

If you do not make an application for ILR within the 3 months temporary leave period, and you make no other application for leave to remain, you will become an over-stayer and lose your right to financial support. You will not be able to switch back to your former leave as a spouse or partner.

If you need more advice on the Domestic Violence Rule or DDVC, contact our confidential helpline.

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