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Clare’s Law: To be rolled out nationwide allowing women access to a partner’s violent past

The policy, named after Clare Wood, means women can obtain any history of violence partner may have from police

A pilot scheme known as Clare’s Law, which allows women (and men) to check police records to see if a partner has a violent past, is to be rolled out nationwide.

The new law, which will require police to hand over details if requested by their partner, is expected to take effect across England and Wales from March.

The policy was trialled for 12 months from September 2012 in Greater Manchester, Wiltshire, Nottinghamshire and Gwent.

Set up to help protect women from domestic violence, the scheme is named after Clare Wood, 36, who was murdered by her ex-boyfriend George Appleton at her home in Salford in February 2009.

The mother of one had met Appleton on Facebook and was unaware of his history of violence against women, including repeated harassment and threats and the knifepoint kidnapping of a past ex-girlfriend.

Home Secretary Theresa May told the Sun that 88 women were killed by a violent partner or ex-partner last year, and said there is currently “considerable confusion” about when or if police can share information on someone's violent past with the public.

She said: “Domestic abuse shatters lives - Clare's Law provides people with the information they need to escape an abusive situation before it ends in tragedy.

“The national scheme will ensure that more people can make informed decisions about their relationship and escape if necessary. This is an important step towards ensuring we do better by women like Clare Wood in the future.”

Around 400 women were given information on partners during the pilot scheme, the Sun said.