Social services – Child Protection
The family department at Osbornes specialise in representing parents, children, grandparents and extended family members in relation to social services involvement with children.
The Local Authority may apply to the Court for a Care Order or a Supervision Order. A Care Order will vest parental responsibility in the Local Authority and they will make decisions for the child including deciding where the child resides. A Supervision Order will give the Local Authority a duty to monitor children, who will generally remain living at home or with family members. The Local Authority could also apply for an Emergency Protection Order or a Secure Accommodation Order. Legal Aid is available for representation in these types of court proceedings.
We also provide advice and assistance to parents when social services are involved with families and procedures are put in place to decide whether children should be made subject to a Child Protection Plan. A Child Protection Conference will be arranged to decide whether this is necessary and parents are entitled to legal representation at the conference.
We also provide advice to parents and family members on seeking contact with children in care. We frequently advise on Special Guardianship Orders, which can provide children with a long term placement with family members or other adult carers, as opposed to being adopted.
Six of our solicitors are members of the Law Society Children Panel, who provide specialist legal advice and can represent children in court proceedings. All of our solicitors are members of Resolution who are committed to dealing with children cases in a sensitive and constructive manner. Our solicitors are also members of the Association of Lawyers for Children.
Written by Bridget Thompson