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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Family court adviser

A family court adviser is a qualified social worker who works for Cafcass. They advise the family court about the best interests of the child in private law cases. This is usually when parents are separating and cannot agree on how best to care for their children. The judge might ask the family court adviser in private law proceedings to prepare a report. This will look at what arrangements are in the child’s best interests. The adviser will meet with the parents and with the child to prepare the report. They will explore the child’s wishes and feelings, and make recommendations to the court.

In public law cases (i.e. when a child is involved in care proceedings) it is a children’s guardian who fulfils this role. The children’s guardian is also a qualified social worker.

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