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29 Care Proceedings

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1 Introduction

2. Who can make decisions about my child's care?

3. Why would social services get involved in my child's care?

4. What happens when social services start care proceedings?

5. What happens at the first hearing?

6. What orders can the court make at the first hearing?

7. Who will represent my child during proceedings?

8. What happens after an interim order is made?

9. How do I prepare for the final hearing?

10. What happens at the final hearing?

11. How does the court make its decision?

12. What types of order can the court make?

13. How long does a care order last?

14. How can I apply to end a care order?

15. Further help

The Community Legal Service

The Community Legal Service has been set up to help you find the right legal information and advice to solve your problems.

You can get help through a national network of organisations including Citizens Advice Bureaux, Law Centres, many independent advice centres and thousands of high street solicitors. All of these services meet quality standards set by the Legal Services Commission, look for the Community Legal Service logo:

Community Legal Service logo

Many of the organisations offer some or all of the their services for free. If you cannot afford to pay for advice you may be eligible for financial support through the Community Legal Service Fund (Legal Aid). You can order leaflets about funding from the LSC Leaflet line on 0845 3000 343.

You can use the Directory on the CLS Direct website to find details of quality assured advice providers.

The Legal Services Commission (LSC)

The Community Legal Service and the Community Legal Service Fund are managed by the Legal Services Commission.  To find out more about us visit our website at or find the details for your local Legal Services Commission office in the phone book. 

More about the CLS Quality Mark

 Click here to read more about the CLS Quality Mark

Use the CLS Directory

 Click here to go to the CLS Directory

Return to the CLS Direct Home Page

 Click here to go to the CLS Direct Home Page

The Law Society of England and Wales
phone: 020 7242 1222

The website of The Law Society of England and Wales

 The website of The Law Society of England and Wales

Family Rights Group
phone: 0800 731 1696 (10am to 12 noon and 1.30pm to 3.30pm Monday to Friday)

The website of the Family Rights Group

 The website of The Family Rights Group

Citizens Advice
Your local Citizens Advice Bureau is listed in the phone book

The website of Citizens Advice

 The website of Citizens Advice

Parentline Plus
Support and advice for parents
phone: 0808 800 2222
textphone: 0800 783 6783

The website of Parentline Plus

 The website of Parentline Plus

The Grandparents' Association
Support and advice for all grandparents, especially those who care for grandchildren full time, are losing contact with their grandchildren or have an education or welfare interest in their grandchildren
phone: 01279 444 964

The website of The Grandparents' Association

 The website of The Grandparents' Association

(formerly the Solicitors Family Law Association)
phone: 01689 820272

The website of Resolution

 The website of The Grandparents' Association

16. About this leaflet

The leaflets are regularly updated but the law may have changed since they were printed so the information in them may be incorrect or out of date.

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