How To Build Your Own Domestic Violence

Case Without A Lawyer

From working with survivors of domestic abuse, we’ve realised that women may often not have access to legal aid/help because they are either very depressed or it’s too difficult for them to think their way around the legal jargon. Sometimes, they may not be able to physically approach a lawyer and increasingly, there may be a lack of legal aid or counsel may be too expensive. Irrespective of whether someone wants to take legal action (criminal, divorce, child custody or asylum) – collecting and presenting evidence is critical.

It doesn’t matter where you are based or what kind of abuse you’re facing – give this guide a chance. It will help you collect and present evidence in such a way that even if you do not want to pursue a legal case, it’ll be useful for your own record. The guide is under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license so if you are a professional or an organisation who works with survivors, please use, remix & distribute this guide as you see fit but attributions to CHAYN for the original work will be most appreciated! The guide is also being translated into several languages at the moment.

Attribution CC BY

You can do this.

The Guides


Social media


We’ve also got deceptive covers for the guide to help you hide it (if you print it) in case someone walks in to the room unannounced.

They’re… stereotypical by design.


If you’re an organisation or professional working with women facing domestic abuse and can benefit from the guide, please do use it. We want this to help as many women as possible. We would really appreciate if you let us know by filling this form.

The guide has been written in such a way that it is useful to women of all backgrounds in most countries of the world. The guide is already being translated into Spanish, Portuguese and French by friends of CHAYN. We want to get the guide translated into other languages so if you’ve got time to volunteer – please do sign up!

Help us spread the word about the guide. This is the most powerful action you can take right now to help us enable women take back their rights! #SpreadChayn

Voices of Survivors

  • I read that download about how to build your own case without a lawyer yesterday. I wish I had read it ten years ago, it has better advice in it than I have been ever given by any solicitor or the police about collecting evidence. I could have had TONS of evidence. If anyone is in an abusive relationship or has just left one, I would advise a read of it.

    Voices of Survivors
  • When my battle of abuse began, social media and search engines weren't a big thing then, so I went into everything completely blindsided. If "How to Build Your Own Domestic Violence Case", was available to me at that time, it would have made a world of a difference in not only empowering me with the knowledge and strength I needed to get through, but it would have done the same for millions of other women out there fighting the same battle. This is definitely a tool for survival”

  • The guide is clear, concise, easy to understand and straight to the point... I will recommend it to anyone , even if you are represented by a solicitor...

  • “I wish I had this when I started out, I had collected some evidence although I will add the police refused to take the audio evidence, I believe ‘How to build your own dv case without a lawyer’ will benefit anyone who is in the process and also help educate those in case they should ever need it. Excellent."

  • Wow, yes, it (the toolkit) really is an eye-opener.