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Whenever Social Services become involved with a vulnerable individual or family, it is extremely important that the parents and family understand what their rights are. Our Social Services advice lawyers can help you during this time so that you are fully informed about your situation and the options you have available to you.
Social Services will typically become involved with a family in order to protect children where there is a risk to their safety or there are grounds to suspect a risk. Social Services are responsible for ensuring the safety of any children who have been identified as being at risk, whether from neglect, physical abuse or violence.
Anyone can be referred to Social Services at any age if they are identified as being vulnerable or there is a risk to their safety. Social Services have a duty to investigate any referrals made to them to determine whether a person is in need of special help or support. This can include assigning a dedicated social worker to monitor the individual and in some cases the individual may be taken into Social Services’ care.
When dealing with Social Services it is extremely important to have the benefit of a legally qualified professional at the earliest opportunity. At Canter Levin and Berg we will provide expert Social Services advice at the early stages and if necessary we will attend pre-proceedings meetings with the client.
Our solicitors can help you to draw up a plan of action that can be put in place to address the concerns that Social Services may have regarding the welfare of your child or children so they are able to satisfy themselves that your child or children can remain with you or within your family.
It can be the case that when dealing with Social Services law, the involvement of Social Services in a family or in the care of an individual can be seen as intrusive. Sometimes the circumstances of a case can lead Social Services to make an application to the Court for a Court Order concerning the care, supervision or placement of a vulnerable person. This Court Order can lay down strict conditions that you might have to meet regarding the care of this person. As Social Services law experts, our solicitors can represent you in court during the proceedings to make sure your views are heard and that the situation is thoroughly examined.
If you are a relative of a parent who has Social Services involvement with their children then we can offer Social Services law advice and assistance. Our Social Services law solicitors can provide you with advice in terms of what role you can play and we can advise you of the legal options available to you to prevent your child from being placed into foster care or from being adopted.
Children’s Social Services law can be a complex and emotive issue, especially if you are facing the removal of your child and the possibility that they will be taken into care or adopted. If after an investigation they believe there are grounds for action, Social Services can place your child into your care either for a limited period of time or until your child reaches adulthood. The length of time your child is in care will depend on the nature of the allegations made against you or your family and whether steps are made to improve the arrangements for caring for your child or for dealing with the issues that have been identified. In most cases involving Social Services for children it is important to remember that the removal of a child from his or her parents is considered a last resort.
Our family law team have extensive experience when it comes to dealing with Social Services for children. We can provide you with advice about the legal Orders available to you that might allow your child to remain in your care and what you might have to do in order to satisfy Social Services and the court that your child is being properly looked after. We can also provide you with advice in situations where you are not the parent or you don’t have parental responsibility. This can include helping you with an application to the Court for a Residence Order or a Special Guardianship Order, depending on the circumstances.
Call our Family Law department now on 0151 239 1181 to find out how we can help.