Legal advice and support for domestic abuse: Simple, logical user journeys

The SupportNav website guides users to the information they need to go forward and get the correct support for their situation

Domestic abuse survivors often need legal advice and support in relation to a number of different issues. SupportNav offers simple, user-centred signposting to help people find the information they need in a complex landscape.

Project highlights

  • Complex issues and processes are made easily navigable for survivors.
  • Content is presented as key themes and then broken down further into topic areas and scenarios.
  • Short, interactive quizzes guide users to answers for the most complex situations.
  • Designed with care around people’s mental state dealing with domestic abuse.


RCJ Advice needed a website to provide information and guidance that would supplement the CourtNav service. Their small team was receiving numerous enquiries from people in domestic abuse situations who would not go on to seek an injunction application, for example because:

  • The abuse occurred in the past and the survivor was already safe, but needed legal help or advice with a related matter
  • The situation was not eligible for an injunction and the survivor was advised against this action
  • The survivor decided themselves not to proceed with an injunction for another reason.

Handling all these enquiries was putting a strain on the small team and affecting their ability to spend sufficient time supporting survivors with injunction applications, which is their main purpose. Although the team would signpost survivors to information that could help them, there was no single source they could go to for this information. The complex nature of these situations would often mean the team would have lengthy conversations with survivors and signpost them to a number of different places and services.

RCJ Advice wanted to pull all this advice and signposting into a single website. For some legal areas where RCJ have specific expertise (such as children, divorce and other family court proceedings), the website would need be able to give detailed advice and answer specific questions based on the survivor's unique circumstances. For other legal and advice areas, the website would be linking the survivor up to external websites and services where they would find the most appropriate help.

Crucially, the new website would need to break down complex information and processes in ways that would be understandable for survivors and for frontline advice staff without any legal knowledge. It would need to help users easily reach the answers they needed without having to digest other content that wasn't relevant for them.


User-centred content

Content was created in close consultation with RCJ subject matter experts for their technical knowledge, and translated into simple language a with friendly, conversational tone. Complex issues and processes are broken down in managable ways.

  • Top level landing pages guide users by topic.
  • Once in a topic, users are guided by scenario.
  • The content page for each scenario is super specific, so users get directly to the answers they need without any fuss.

Content-first design

Our design and development teams worked collaboratively with the copywriter to create pages and components that make it as easy as possible for users to navigate the topics and scenarios.

  • Clean, simple homepage and landing pages allow users to pick their topics without distraction.
  • An index with anchor links at the top of every content page immediately shows the user what's on the page, and lets them jump straight to what's relevant for them.
  • Soft shapes and warm colours have a reassuring feel, matching the tone of the content.
  • Single, simple link tile style across landing and content pages doesn't give the user any more to process than they need to.
  • Interactive triages sit seemlessly within pages, while having unique design elements that indicates to the user they are doing something slightly different, and enables them to navigate back and forth within the triage if they need to.

Interactive triage tools

Where issues are too complex to split out into single scenarios, for example child abduction or immigration, users are guided through a series of questions that leads them to the appropriate outcome.

These triage tools are a clever CMS feature, so SupportNav admins can easily edit them, and can create additional triages if they need to.

SupportNav is saving valuable time on our advice line. If it's a matter that's covered by SupportNav, the non legal team will send them there. They won't need to speak to someone in the legal team for advice. And we're less likely to get repeat calls from those people because they've been signposted to the correct place.

Alex Lowry
Solicitor & Promotions Lead, RCJ Advice
The result is a website that's welcoming, reassuring and beautifully simple to use. The CourtNav team and other frontline advice agencies can confidently refer survivors to SupportNav, knowing they will be signposted to the appropriate information and services for their situation.

Are you dealing with complex information that needs to be made simple?

We have a wealth of project experience when it comes to demystifying issues and processes that seem overwhelming for their end users. We work right across the not-for-profit sector including health, housing, legal and advice sectors. If you need help solving a similar problem, we'd love to talk.

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