An Initial Child Protection Case Conference (ICPC) may be held by the local authority when they are concerned about the care you are providing for your child. In this situation, parents and carers will have undergone an assessment, or investigation, known as a “section 47 assessment”. The purpose of this is to see whether the local authority believe that there is evidence to support the concern that the subject child is at risk of significant harm. If the report concludes this, the local authority will invite you to an ICPC. Not only will you be invited to this meeting but also any professionals who are involved with your family. At the meeting the social worker will discuss the concerns about the care for the child in question and put together a plan to reduce any risks that may negatively affect the child’s welfare.
If you have been invited to an Initial Child Protection Case Conference relating to your child, it is in your best interests to acquire professional legal advice at the earliest opportunity. At Cartwright King, we take a non-judgemental, professional approach to our client’s cases and acknowledge your right to legal representation. Our acclaimed Child Care solicitors will put your mind at ease by supporting you through the legal proceedings and representing you in court if the need arises.
Free initial telephone consultation
Everyone has the right to advice if they are dealing with issues relating to their child’s welfare. Our experienced lawyers are available at any time of day or night to help you. Our highly skilled Child Care team are here to take the worry off your hands.
We will happily provide an initial free telephone consultation to discuss your situation in more detail and if you are happy to proceed with our services, you will either be quoted an estimated or a fixed fee on a private fee paying basis. In some cases, Legal Aid may be available. Our fees will be dependent on a variety of factors such as what your case entails and the duration of your case. Please feel free to contact us for a no obligation quote on 0808 168 5550 or email us using the enquiry form below.
Initial Child Protection Case Conferences and what to expect
The ICPC and all future meetings will usually take place at the social worker’s office as the meeting is formal. You should always attend these meetings and you will see the social worker there, together with any professionals involved with your family such as health visitors, midwives, teachers/nursery staff or even the police, depending on the concerns. All of these people can raise and discuss their concerns over your child’s welfare but the meeting will be chaired by an independent reviewer who will sum up each person’s views and then ask all professionals in the room if they believe a Child Protection Plan should be put in place for the child.
Prior to attending a meeting, your social worker should prepare a report and talk you through it to prepare you. You may be entitled to legal aid and if you are worried about what is happening, you should consult a solicitor who can come to the meeting with you. Whilst at a solicitor cannot contribute to the meeting in any way, they can offer you advice during the meeting, help you ask the right questions and go through the report with you as well. If the issues raised by the local authority are of a serious nature and relate to removing the child from your care or taking you to court, having a solicitor with you will help when preparing you for the next steps.
The next steps
After the initial conference there will be a follow up conference but prior to that being arranged, there will also be regular meetings for you and the professionals that are involved with the family to discuss the child’s welfare and ensure the risks posed to the child are reducing. These are usually called “Core Group meetings”.
There is no set amount of time that a Child Protection Plan can last for but the longer the time, the more support a family and the child will receive from the social worker and professionals. If the welfare and care for a child does not improve, court action can be taken.
How can we help you?
If you face a situation regarding a Child Protection Order it is your best interests to get legal advice on the matter. If you or somebody you know is going through a child protection conference or has been issued with a child protection plan, our experienced Child Care solicitors are available to advise you throughout the entire process to adhere to the procedure and build a strong case for your defence. We promise to:
- Advise you throughout the entire process
- Treat your case in a non-judgemental, sensitive manner
- Deal confidentially with any concerns you may have
- Represent you in court where necessary
- Prepare and collate any and all documentary evidence that may be required
- Take the worry off your hands
- Prepare an appeal if necessary
Our team are highly ranked in the Legal 500 and Chambers and Partners guides. We have extensive experience in successfully defending family matters, with our acclaimed Child Care solicitors who are renowned for their professional approach.
Amidst the Coronavirus outbreak, our team of solicitors are adopting Skype video calling to continue providing excellent legal services to you.
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Why choose Cartwright King?
Legal Aid is available in this area which means that you may be eligible for free advice. To discuss your eligibility for Legal Aid please get in contact with us for free initial advice on 0808 168 5550 or email your enquiry using the form below.
If you are not eligible for Legal Aid then we can discuss affordable private paying fee arrangements.
Cartwright King also promotes remote working, so we can provide you with the same excellent service outside of our office locations.