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Child Care Services in Sheffield

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At Cartwright King, our child care solicitors dedicate themselves to every case they are appointed, striving to provide quality legal advice to give you the most favourable result. With an exceptional track record and legal expertise, our law firm has been acknowledged as a Legal 500 firm. We are extremely proud of our respected reputation and will go above and beyond to represent you in matters of Child Law and Advanced Family Law.

From your initial pre-proceedings letter to your Public Law Outline (PLO) or a Pre-Proceedings Meeting meeting, your solicitor will advise you at every stage. We will help you keep your emotions in check, providing the necessary information and evidence as and when required. With our help, you will have the best chance of achieving a successful result that reflects your child’s needs. And, if your pre-proceedings process does progress to court, you will receive consistent representation throughout the entire process.

All our solicitors are experienced working remotely and carrying out meetings by telephone and online video conferencing; however you choose to be contacted, we can work around you. If you prefer, you are always welcome to come and see us at our Sheffield office.

If you would like to arrange your FREE, no-obligation telephone consultation, give our child care solicitors a call today on 0114 321 1000 or submit an online enquiry form.

Different Types of Care Orders

When the court makes a decision on who will have parental responsibility over your children and what their living arrangements will be, the ruling will be reflected in the type of care order issued at the end of the proceedings. Our child care solicitors in Sheffield have experience dealing with all different types of care orders, including:

Interim Care Orders

Most child care proceedings come to a decision where the Judge implements an Interim Care Order. These rulings allow the court more time to make a formal decision, allowing the child to remain at home while more evidence is gathered. This order allows the child’s parents/guardians more time to improve the child’s care ready for the court’s final decision.

Supervision Orders

When the social services are concerned about a child remaining at their home address, they can suggest a Supervision Order to the court. For 12 months, the child’s care will be overseen by a social worker, allowing the family to benefit from their advice and assistance. During this time, the parents/guardians are able to improve the child’s situation with the Local Authority’s support ready for a review a year later. If they are not satisfied, the order can be extended for an additional two years.

Placement Orders

A Placement Order often follows a Care Order. When a care order is issued, a child is removed from the current home and placed with a foster family. Their day-to-day parental responsibility is handed over to the Local Authority; however, their biological parents do retain some parental rights. Once in place, the Placement Order begins the adoption process. The search begins for an appropriate adoptive family for the child to reside with permanently.

Special Guardianship Orders

In instances where Special Guardianship Orders are ruled, children are removed from their families and placed with a Special Guardian. In most cases, these guardians are other family members or, at least, someone who is known to the family. These guardians become responsible for the child and gain parental rights.

Your Free Introductory Consultation

Trusting your child care solicitor can have a huge effect on the overall outcome of your case. If you have a positive rapport with your legal representor, you will be able to open up and be transparent with them regarding your childcare arrangements. At Cartwright King, we have identified this need for trust in solicitor-client relationships. As a result, we offer introductory calls to help potential clients assess whether we are the right law firm for them.

Within your FREE initial, no-obligation telephone conversation, we will:

  • Explore the details of your case
  • Grasp an understanding of your childcare position
  • Explain the options available to your situation

Of course, your call will be treated with the utmost respect and confidentiality, and at no cost. Use this call as a chance to get a feel of our solicitor’s working practices and whether this would work for you. If not, there’s no pressure or obligation to appoint our expertise.

*Please remember this conversation will not include any recommendations of legal advice or strategy. It is purely a goodwill introductory chat.

Why Choose Cartwright King Child Care Solicitors?

With Cartwright King’s solicitors, you are not alone with your child care proceedings. We know how overwhelming the legal processes can be for parents and guardians, that is why we look to alleviate your stress levels. Regardless of your reason for needing the assistance of a child care solicitor in Sheffield, we will always conduct ourselves professionally, with respect and without judgement.

From our years of experience, child care proceedings are emotionally challenging processes. We have seen countless cases where the stresses of hearings and childcare orders take their toll on parents and guardians. That is why our solicitors will make themselves available at all times to guarantee your welfare is also considered.

Our solicitors will help you cut through the legal jargon of your case, giving you an understanding of why each process is happening and what is needed from you. However, they will take care of all the pressured deadlines and paperwork, allowing you to focus on your child and their welfare. Each case is given time and consideration; cases are never rushed. Your child care solicitor will ensure every option has been exhausted, giving you complete transparency over your situation and their suggested approach.

Cartwright King Solicitors has been recognised by the Law Society, which has acknowledged Cartwright King’s legal practices and named us a Legal 500 firm. Our solicitor’s expertise spans right across Child Law and Advanced Family Law, allowing us to be confident in the advice and representation you would receive.

Cartwright King’s Child Care Soliciting Fees

Everybody should have the option and ability to appoint high-quality, professional legal advice, especially when a child’s stability hangs in the balance. Therefore, at Cartwright King, we have an honest pricing structure that is competitive but has no hidden fees.

With child care proceedings, we recommend all clients explore their eligibility for Legal Aid. If you have parental responsibility, you may be able to receive free legal advice. Contact us if you are unsure if this applies to you.

Our Sheffield Office

We have been in our current Sheffield office since February 2017. You can visit us at St James House, Floor 9 Vicar Lane, Sheffield, S1 2EX.

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Our Sheffield Office

Our Sheffield office is located at St James House, Floor 9 Vicar Lane, Sheffield, S1 2EX

Parking Facilities

We have limited car parking to offer at St James House. That being said, on Campo Lane, there is an NCP car park. You can then turn right into Vicar Lane, and take the first right into St James House car park. Our office is only a one-minute walk from here.

There is also a John Lewis car park available on Burgess Street. Only a 6-minute walk away, you can find our office by Burgess Street > Barker’s Pool > Leopold Street > Orchard Street > Vicar Lane.

By Train

We are a 12-minute walk from Sheffield’s railway station. The route to follow is > Sheaf Street > Howard Street > Hallam Square > Surrey Street > Leopold Street > Orchard Street > Vicar Lane. There is also a taxi rank at the station, opposite the British Transport Police Station.

By Bus

The Sheffield Interchange Bus Station is only 10-minutes away from St James House. Simply take Pond Street > (first left) Arundel Gate > High Street > Church Street > Vicar Lane.

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Frequently asked questions.

When a Local Authority’s social services department has concerns regarding a child’s care and welfare, they have a duty to take action. In circumstances where a child is not at any immediate risk of harm or already come to harm, the social services follow the pre-proceedings process as outlined in the government’s legal structure of Public Law.

The pre-proceedings process begins with a letter to the parents/guardians outlining their concerns and inviting them to a pre-proceedings (PLO) meeting. Legal representation and advice are recommended for this meeting, as a solicitor is able to advise you on the best course of action. The meeting aims to assess the needs of the child and the family, coming up with a solution where the necessary improvements can be made and the child can continue living at home.

A plan of action is agreed upon for the following 12 weeks, whereby a review will be carried out at the end. If the social services are not satisfied the case will be escalated to court.

When a child care proceeding is given a court date, it becomes a ‘public law’ case. The process is treated as a last resort to keep the child at home and improve the situation. Our solicitors in Sheffield are able to support you throughout this process, guiding you through each hearing and advising you on your response.

These proceedings will follow a similar structure:

  • Case Management Hearing – the first hearing in the process, this outlines when and how the case will be heard.
  • Contested Removal Hearing – when a case goes to court, the social services will suggest a childcare order; this is only in instances where they believe the child should be removed from their home environment. A Contested Removal Hearing is then held, giving carers and parents the chance to contest the decision. The court, on hearing all arguments, will then decide where the child will reside during the case.
  • Issues Resolution Hearing – Your solicitor will then collate evidence and information to present to the court. This hearing aims to hear from all parties in an attempt to resolve any raised issues. With the help of our Cartwright King solicitors, your case will be presented professionally and thoroughly, proving the Judge will have a cohesive argument in your child’s best interests.
  • Final Hearing – if the Issues Resolution Hearing is unable to form a conclusive answer, a Final Hearing will take place. The Judge will hear all the evidence again before they make the final decision.

Local Authorities can choose between a range of orders to accompany a child care proceeding in court. The Judge will then determine if this suggestion is necessary, or whether another course of action is required.

The range of orders includes:

  • A Supervision Order – parents are supported by the social services for 12 months, entitling them to advice, assistance and support. The child remains at home, but the situation is monitored. If need be the order can be extended for an additional two years.
  • A Special Guardianship Order – the child is removed from their home address and placed with a Special Guardian. This guardian is often known to the child and is normally a family member or friend of the family. The parental responsibility will pass on to them.
  • A Care Order – the child is removed under extreme circumstances and placed with a foster family. The parental responsibility is passed to the Local Authority and they will make decisions regarding the child’s health, education and welfare.
  • A Placement Order – supporting a Care Order, the child will be placed within the adoption process and the search begins for a suitable adoptive family.
  • An Interim Care Order – a temporary arrangement, allowing parents and guardians time to improve the situation ready for the Judge’s final review.

In most cases, child care proceedings are completed within 6 months (24 weeks) after an initial application is submitted to the court.