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J Interpers Violence. 2012 Apr;27(6):1137-54. doi: 10.1177/0886260511424500. Epub 2011 Dec 26.

The economic costs of partner violence and the cost-benefit of civil protective orders.

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Department of Behavioral Science, Center on Drug and Alcohol Research, University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY 40504, USA.


Partner violence affects a significant number of women and their children each year. Estimates of the economic costs of partner violence are substantial. However, most estimates of the costs of partner violence are made at the aggregate level rather than the individual level. Estimating costs at the individual level allows for a wider range of costs of partner violence to be considered. This study is one of the first to examine a wide range of economic costs of partner violence and to examine the economic costs and cost-benefits of civil protective orders. Overall, including changes in quality of life, protective orders were estimated to have saved taxpayers in one small state US$85 million in a 1-year period. More generally, this study provides a framework to address more specific complexities associated with cost-benefit analyses of partner violence and the impact of justice system interventions.

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