The guidance should:
• be used by the police, social services and criminal justice agencies investigating offences (or joint protocol cases);
• assist those taking forward criminal proceedings for the domestic abuse offence;
• guide the Probation Board for Northern Ireland in their assessment and analysis for the courts at pre-sentence stage;
• assist the work of non-governmental organisations and voluntary organisations;
• inform educational tools to raise awareness of the new domestic abuse offence; and
• provide information on domestic abuse, and the domestic abuse offence under the Act, to those interested in the subject area (including anyone affected by domestic abuse).