Children and Social Services

We recognise that legal proceedings or pre-proceedings in relation to your own children or those of close family members cause tremendous stress and upset.

We have a Care and Adoption department consisting of experienced and passionate lawyers, who are accredited by the Law Society specialist in this area who will give practical advice in order to maximise your chances of a successful outcome.

We have vast experience in representing Biological Parents, Stepparents, other family members such as Grandparents, Children & Local Authorities.

We also have expertise in lesser-known areas such as Female Genital Mutilation & Forced Marriage Protection Orders.

What we can help with

The list below outlines some of the areas that we regularly assist our clients with. 

Care Proceedings – these are court proceedings brought by the local authority in relation to a child or children. The local authority will ask the court to make a certain order which they argue will allow the children to be safe. This order is usually a Care Order or a Supervision Order.

Emergency Protection Orders and Police Powers of Protection – a local authority will often apply to the court for an Emergency Protection Order if an immediate need arises to remove or protect a child. 

Adoption – towards the end of care proceedings, a local authority may form the view that the child cannot be returned to the care of his or her parents and his or her welfare demands adoption.

Special Guardianship Orders – an order that appoints a non-parent as a special guardian for the child.

Pre-proceedings (often referred to as Public Law Outline or PLO) 

Child Protection Conferences – 

Why choose us?

Our Care and Adoption Department is recognised as one of the leading south coast Care & Adoption Teams, which has in the past been awarded recognition under the Lexis Nexis Family Law awards.

All of our legal experts are part of the Law Society’s Children panel and can deal with the entirety of your case, from providing initial advice to representing you at court hearings.

How is our work funded?

Biological Parents

If you are a biological parent to a child subject to proceedings, or pre proceedings, brought by a local authority, you will be entitled to public funding under either the legal aid or the legal help scheme.

If you are a biological parent, eligibility for this public funding is on a non-means and non-merits basis. This means that you are automatically entitled to this funding, and we will not require proof of your income or the strength of your case.

Non-parents (grandparents and other relatives)

We regularly represent grandparents, stepparents, aunts, uncles and other non-parents during care proceedings.

Unfortunately, the Legal Aid Agency does not provide automatic funding for non-parents, meaning you will have to jump through the hoops and over the hurdles of a means and merits-based assessment. This means that your financial circumstances and the strength of your case will be examined by the Legal Aid Agency.

This can be a complicated process for those without training in Legal Aid applications. Fortunately, we have a number of staff who make these applications on a day to day basis. Please therefore contact us as soon as possible for some advice about securing public funding and/or your case in general.

For more information, please contact our accredited team on 01983 533938 for our Newport office, 01983 615615 for our Ryde office or email

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