Parents in the midst of Care Proceedings
Some parents believe that if Care Proceedings are issued in respect of their children and the children are removed from their care that there is no way back.
Unless you work within the legal sector you are unlikely to realise the number of families with Social Services involvement on a daily basis, probably not too far from where you live.
Parents sometimes end up on a downward spiral and just need guidance when it comes to caring for their children. However, depending on the circumstances Social Services can get involved quickly and before the parents know it, they are in the midst of a very scary and unfamiliar process known as Care Proceedings.
There are many reasons why Care Proceedings are issued, the main factors being neglect, domestic violence between the parents or partners, drug and alcohol misuse of the parents, as well as cases where children have sustained injuries, physical and/or sexual abuse. Although all of these concerns are extremely serious, if a parent is able to show a prolonged and significant change in circumstances, it does not mean that all hope is gone. Sometimes Courts do rule that children can return to their parents’ care.
Parents also do not always realise that if they are involved in Care Proceedings, they are entitled to free legal advice and representation at court funded by the Legal Aid Agency.
Nicki Butterworth of Ridley & Hall commented “Every case is so different, it is not a one size fits all with Care Proceedings cases and that’s why here at Ridley & Hall we adapt to any eventuality, whether that is representing clients from abroad and also those who live here but are limited with English, or may be profoundly deaf. Some parents may not realise they can obtain free legal advice especially if they are young and have never been involved with Social Services. Feel free to give us a call to find out if we can assist.”
If you are a parent experiencing Social Services involvement, especially proceedings taking place in court, it is vital that you seek independent legal advice at the earliest opportunity to ensure that you are fully represented. Please call us on 0800 8 60 62 65 or email Nicki Butterworth for further information.