Disputes about Children

You may have a dispute with the other parent of your child or even Social Services regarding the care of your child.  White & Co has extensive experience and expertise in assisting parents regarding the care arrangements for their child.

Services offered are set out below.

Legal Aid is available if social services are considering removal of your child.

We assist you if social services make allegations or become involved with your children.

There may come a time when you may struggle to provide proper care for your children and you may require some support and guidance. For example, Social services may think you are not providing good enough care for your children and they may want to discuss this issue with you face to face. You may wish to have a solicitor to advise you in advance of the meeting or to write letters on your behalf. There will always be a number of options open to you and it will be important for you to have legal advice at the earliest opportunity.

Sometimes Social Services may ask you to consider entering into a formal agreement with them so that they may look after your child in foster care by consent. Social Services may wish you to adhere to a list of rules. You should always seek legal advice prior to entering in to a formal agreement. It may be that entering in to such an agreement will achieve the best outcome for you and your child/children but it is always best to take legal advice to understand the implications before finalising an agreement.

If there is a risk that social services may go to court to seek an order to remove your child from your care it will be important for you to have legal advice and representation at court. Social services cannot remove your child from your care without your consent or a court order. White & Co can help you to decide what is best to do and to advise you upon the rights of your child and yourself.

If social services bring proceedings against your child we will represent you within those proceedings.

Legal Aid is available for advice and representation and so there will be no cost to you to be represented in these proceedings.

If social services have issued court proceedings to seek a Care Order or Supervision Order for your child and you need representation, contact us urgently.  

If social services decide to take such matters to court they may seek an order to share Parental Responsibility with the parent and may use that responsibility to remove the child into foster care.

Alternatively social services may seek a Supervision Order to offer advice and assistance and to befriend the child. If court proceedings are pursued then social services will have a lawyer of their own.
An independent person will be appointed to represent the child who is known as the Guardian and he/she will appoint a lawyer for the child.
It is important, therefore, that a parent also has the benefit of good legal representation. We are here to assist parents in such circumstances and to provide advice and representation at court.

We can expertly advise on this complex area of law. If you are caring for a child, or propose to care for a child and you are not the natural parent you should take advice as to the various options open to you to safeguard the position of yourself and the child/children. You may be the natural parent who wishes to oppose such an application. White & Co. offer a comprehensive service to advise, assist and represent parties in this situation.

You may be a prospective adopter or a relative who wishes to offer long term care for a child. White & Co can advise you from first thinking about taking on a child long term, through to the preparation of court forms, notices to be given to various people and representation in the courts. Clear explanations will be given throughout the process.

Alternatively you may be a parent who wishes to oppose the plans for your child to be cared for permanently by someone other than yourself. White & Co can advise you throughout and represent you in the proceedings.

We act in disputes concerning children including applications for Child Arrangements Orders (formerly known as Contact Orders and Residence Orders), Specific Issue Orders and Prohibited Steps Orders.

If you are living apart fromthe other parent of your child you may have difficulties in resolving disputes about arrangements for where your child should live and how much time they spend with the non-resident parent.

White & Co offer a sympathetic ear and advice based on an understanding of how difficult these issues can be to resolve.

We pride ourselves on attempting to resolve family disputes without unnecessary court proceedings and always in the best interests of the child.

We can assist you in negotiating appropriate arrangements for your child or in court proceedings where necessary.

We can also apply for Parental Responsibility Orders and any other orders required, relating to children.