This article reviews the development of the law relating to forced marriage from the victim's perspective. It begins by analysing the law utilised to protect victims before the Forced Marriage (Civil Protection) Act 2007 and then examines this statute and analyses its effectiveness. The article concludes that the Forced Marriage (Civil Protection) Act 2007 constituted a major step forward in the battle against forced marriage because it emphasised that the practice is unacceptable and provided practical remedies designed with the victim in mind. But the Act has not been as effective as it could be due to lack of awareness among victims and front line professionals and poor monitoring and enforcement of protection orders. The article then considers the Government's response to this, namely, the criminalisation of forcing someone to marry. It is suggested that this will not serve the interests of the victim because it will deter them from seeking help because they fear that their relatives will be prosecuted.
- forced marriage