23.This section extends the availability of non-molestation orders to those in domestic relationships who have never cohabited or have never been married. This new category of associated person will also be able to apply for an occupation order under section 33 of the Act as long as the requirements of section 33(1) are met. As section 33 only applies to homes in which the applicant and respondent have lived or intended to live, it is unlikely that this new category of associated person will be able to satisfy this requirement very often.
24.It extends the list of associated persons by incorporating a reference to those who have or have had an intimate personal relationship which is or was of significant duration. It will be for the court to decide on whether the relationship meets these criteria. This covers a long-standing relationship which may, or may not, be a sexual relationship, but which is an intimate and personal one. It does not include long-term platonic friends or “one-night stands”.