Adult Safeguarding - Raising a Concern and the Decision Making Tool (DMT)

 MK Together has developed a Decision Making Tool to make it clearer and easier for people to understand what a safeguarding concern is and what to do with a concern.

Domestic Abuse

Any incident or pattern of incidents of controlling, coercive or threatening behaviour, violence or abuse between those aged 16 or over who are or have been intimate partners or family members regardless of gender or sexuality.


  • The adult has no current fears and there are adequate protective factors, and it is:
    • One off incident with no injury or harm experienced
    • Occasional taunts or verbal outbursts where the adult has capacity to decide whether to have the case referred on
    • Situational incident with no previous history where carer breakdown/lack of support may have resulted in incident.


  • Unexplained marking or lesions or grip marks on a number of occasions
  • Controlling or coercive behaviour is witnessed
  • Frequent verbal outbursts that cause some distress or some level or harm
  • Sexual assault or humiliation where the adult has capacity and does not want to be referred
  • Experiences occasional episodes of fear of the alleged cause of risk
  • Subject to severe controlling behaviour e.g. finances/medical


  • Subject to regular violent behaviour
  • Threats to kill/choke /suffocate etc.
  • In constant fear of being harmed
  • Sex without valid consent (rape)
  • Female Genital Mutilation (FGM)
  • Honour based’ violence and/or forced marriage
  • Person denied access to medical treatment/care/vital equipment to maintain independence by alleged cause of risk
  • Frequent physical outbursts that cause distress or some level or harm
  • Subject to stalking/harassment

Where there are children (under 18) in the household or present the case must be referred to Children’s Safeguarding as well as following the Adult Safeguarding process.
MK Act are the local specialist domestic abuse service, Helpline number: 0344 375 4307, Professionals number: 01908 295731, email: Details of their service is available at:

Last Updated: 7 December 2021