Arrangements for Children & Social Services

Involvement with Social Services

Our experienced team will advise and represent parents, other family members, children and children’s guardians in all public law proceedings. We can also advise and assist where children are voluntarily accommodated and will attend child protection conferences and we often play a key role in advising parents involved in disagreements with social services, whether before or during court proceedings. We have experience in complicated and serious cases involving allegations of non-accidental injury, sexual abuse and factitious illness. Our team includes members of the Law Society Children’s Panel who act for children independently of their court appointed guardians. We are able to provide clear and practical advice to guide you and to provide advocacy at all levels of court to ensure continuity though a difficult process.

Arrangements for the Children

When a couple separate, agreeing the arrangements for how their children are going to be cared for can be challenging and sometimes difficult. In any dispute involving children, our aim is to find a solution which puts their interests first. We offer a supportive, friendly and highly experienced service.

Following a relationship breakdown we can help you to make arrangements for your children including where the children will reside and when they will see the absent parent. We will assist you to focus on reaching an agreement wherever possible and guiding you towards solutions involving mediation or collaborative law. If that is impossible we provide a vigorous and focused representation in court.

Our team of solicitors are experienced family law advocates, often enabling us to represent you in court with the same lawyer who has advised you throughout the case.

Why choose Hattens

Our staff are friendly & approachable

The advice given will be explained without legal jargon

Our clients best interest comes first

We have been serving the local community for over 100 years

Special Guardianship Orders

Where a child is being cared for in another family but adoption is not appropriate, we can advise and assist about Special Guardianship Orders and the support packages available from local authorities.

We can assist in negotiating with the biological parents or the local authority and guide you through the process and represent you in court if it becomes necessary. In some cases we can provide publicly funded advice (Legal Aid) depending on the type of case and your financial circumstances.

Legal Aid

You may be able to access public funding, known as Legal Aid, to assist in resolving your family dispute.

Legal Aid is available for certain family cases relating to finances and/or children, when there is evidence of domestic abuse or child abuse, or in cases where an order to protect someone from domestic abuse is needed.

You can access Legal Aid for mediation, this will depend upon your ability to pay and whether mediation is right for you. If you are eligible for Legal Aid to cover the costs of mediation you are also entitled to some independent legal advice funded through Legal Aid.

To see if you are eligible please see the link to the calculator at www.gov.uk/check-legal-aid


Samantha Lynch


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