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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Interim care plan

An interim care plan is a temporary care plan. It will be put in place during care proceedings until the court is able to make a final decision.

An interim care plan will cover most of the same things as a full care plan, such as where the child will live and who with, and how their needs will be met. It will also set out plans for contact between the child and the parents. An independent reviewing officer must be appointed before the first review of the child’s interim care plan.

When they apply for an interim care order, children’s services must have prepared a social work statement. This will set out their concerns to the court. But a key document for the court is the interim care plan for the child. Children’s services must be able to show the court that they have discussed the interim plan with the child’s parents (and the child, where possible), to seek their views, which should be reflected in the plan. The interim care plan must properly reflect and respect the child’s racial, cultural and religious heritage.

For more information see our advice pages on:

Care (and related) proceedings

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