Social Services and Your Family

Social Services have a statutory obligation to safeguard and promote the welfare of all children.


If Social Services have approached you with concerns about your children it may be because someone has made a referral to them with a worry about your children, or because you or your partner have been involved with Social Services in the past.


When a child is referred to Social Services an initial assessment is completed by a social worker. Following the initial assessment there are three options:-

  1. File closed, no further action is required, or
  2. Support will be offered to you and your family, or
  3. Core assessment is required.


A core assessment is a more in depth assessment completed by a social worker. The purpose of the assessment is to clarify and identify the needs of the children and gain a greater understanding of their circumstances and parent’s ability to meet those circumstances.


If a core assessment is completed, additional work will be done with you and your family. This work will be done by a Social Worker. Following the core assessment there are three options:-

  1. File closed, no further action is required, or
  2. Your family will be monitored and reviewed in the near future, or
  3. Social Services will invite you to a Child Protection Conference.


A Child Protection Conference is a meeting with you and professionals involved in your children’s lives, e.g. health visitor or teacher, and it is where plans are made with you about what needs to be done to protect your children or ensure that all their needs are being met which include health, accommodation, stimulation and being kept safe from risky individuals. That plan may involve you attending groups or undertaking direct work with professionals. If you are asked to attend a Child Protection Conference you should seek legal advice.


Here at Emery Johnson Astills we have a specialist care department who are experts in child care law and can advise, assist and represent you throughout your involvement with Social Services. We will assess you for free legal advice through Legal Aid as in many cases, free legal advice can be obtained.


If, after attending a Child Protection Conference your children are made subject to a Child Protection Plan and Social Services do not see changes being made within the family home or their concerns increase they can seek their own legal advice and enter into Court proceedings. Care proceedings can be a worrying time for any parent and our specialist solicitors in the care department at Emery Johnson Astills will be there for you along the way to advise and assist you to achieve the best outcome for your children and you.


If Social Services are involved with your family and you would like to speak to one of our specialist solicitors within the care department at Emery Johnson Astills, please do not hesitate to call us on 0116 255 4855.