How to contact us for advice

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Our advice service

We provide advice to parents, grandparents, relatives, friends and kinship carers who are involved with children’s services in England or need their help. We can help you understand processes and options when social workers or courts are making decisions about your child’s welfare.

Our advice service is free, independent and confidential.

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By phone or email

To speak to an adviser, please call our free and confidential advice line 0808 801 0366 (Monday to Friday 9.30am to 3pm, excluding Bank Holidays). Or you can ask us a question via email using our advice enquiry form.

Discuss on our forums

Our online advice forums are an anonymous space where parents and kinship carers (also known as family and friends carers) can get legal and practical advice, build a support network and learn from other people’s experiences.

Advice on our website

Our get help and advice section describes the processes that you and your family are likely to go through, so that you know what to expect. Our webchat service can help you find the information and advice on our website which will help you understand the law and your rights.

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Disabled child

A child who is disabled is automatically a ‘child in need’. A social worker must, if asked, carry out a child in need assessment. This is to see if the child and family need extra help. How much help children’s services can provide depends on local eligibility criteria. This applies to all children in need, including disabled children.

A disabled child may be assessed as needing help under the Chronically Sick and Disabled Persons Act 1970. If this is the case, they will have an absolute right to get that help.

Under the Equality Act 2010, it is against the law for schools to discriminate against disabled children.

Examples of discrimination could include:

  • A school refusing to admit a disabled child because of their disability.
  • A school stopping a disabled pupil going outside at break because it takes them longer to get there.

Schools must make ‘reasonable adjustments’ so that children are not discriminated against. Examples of reasonable adjustments might be installing a ramp for wheelchair access or providing extra teaching support and specialist equipment.

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Our funding means we can currently only help 4 in 10 people

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