Legal Aid Changes: Public Law Children
This is the one area where nothing has changed.
Application by the Local Authority for Care or Supervision Order
As pre 1st April any parent or person with Parental Responsibility is automatically eligible for Legal Aid funding to be represented in these proceedings regardless of their financial circumstances. Any person who is made a party to such proceedings who is not a parent or person with Parental Responsibility can apply to the Legal Aid Agency for Legal Aid funding to be represented in these proceedings. As previously the application will be considered on it merits and their financial circumstances.
Application for Orders in respect of a child in care, for example discharge of Care Order or contact to child in care
As previously legal Aid for any of these applications is available. The application will be considered on its merits and on their financial eligibility.
Any parent or person with Parental Responsibility who has received correspondence from the Local Authority inviting them to a meeting to discuss concerns that they have which give rise to an intention to issue Care Proceedings (the PLO Process) pursuant to Section 31 of the Children Act is eligible for Legal Aid under the Legal Help Scheme regardless of their financial circumstances.
Advice in relation to Social Services involvement with a child
Any person who seeks legal advice in relation to Social Services involvement in respect of their children is potentially eligible for Legal Aid under the Legal Help Scheme provided the merits of their case justify it and they are financially eligible.