Under domestic violence law, men who emotionally abuse their partners by controlling their finances, preventing them from seeing friends or verbally abusing them, may soon be prosecuted.
MPs in Britain are expected to announce an expansion of the definition of domestic abuse, to include "coercive" or threatening behaviour.
AdvertisementThe law will also be applied to under 18s for the first time, amid concerns about teenage girls suffering in abusive relationships.
Currently, there is no explicit criminal definition of domestic violence, The Telegraph reports.
According to the report, the incorporation of the "coercive control" element follows a report by the Centre for Social Justice, the think-tank set up by Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith.
Published in July this year, 'Beyond Violence: Breaking abusive cycles in families' called for the punishment of strategies used by men or women to "subjugate" their partners, including depriving the victim of "autonomy, freedom and dignity", the paper said.
"Strategies include depriving the victim of money, making requests that become gradually more and more unreasonable (such as requests about not going out, not seeing friends, or checking levels of cleanliness around the house), locking the victim up and making threats of harm to any children involved," the report found.
Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg and Home Secretary Theresa May are expected address the issue and reach the conclusion that domestic violence can encompass "psychological, physical, sexual, financial and emotional" control, the paper added.