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Safety When Preparing to Leave...

  1. Open a savings account in your own name to establish your independence. Give the bank a safe address, such as a post office box or a work address. Think of other ways to increase your independence.
  2. Leave money, an extra set of keys, copies of important documents, and extra clothes with someone you trust so you can leave quickly.
  3. Decide who you could stay with and who might loan you some money.
  4. Keep the shelter's phone number close at hand and keep some change or a calling card on you at all times for emergencies.
  5. Review your safety plan as often as possible in order to plan the safest way to leave your batterer. Leaving your batterer is the most dangerous time.
  6. If you must leave your children, recover them as soon as possible. Courts tend to give custody to a parent who physically has the children. Seek legal advice or call a domestic violence agency if there are no current child custody orders.