Q: My children were taken into care two years ago when I was unfit and unable to look after them. I was told the plan for them would be adoption, but to date no suitable adopters have been found for them and they are still in foster care. Losing my children was truly devastating and as a result of the effect it had on me, I have since managed to completely turn my life around. I no longer take drugs and I am in a really good place. I desperately want to spend more time with my children. Would it be possible for me to see them more than I am currently allowed to?
A: When children are subject to Care Orders in favour of the Local Authority, the LA is under a duty to review the contact they have with their family. This would usually be reviewed and discussed at regular meetings called LAC reviews.
If you do not feel that you are being listened to, or that the children are not being allowed to see you as much as they should, you can apply to the Court under the Children Act for contact to a child in care. Legal Aid may be available to you to make such an application.
If you have made significant changes in your life, then you may also ask the Court to discharge the Care Order and revoke the placement order and have the children returned to your care to live with you. However, to convince the Court that the children should be returned to your care may be a difficult job and this is a highly complex area of law. You would therefore benefit from instructing an experienced family solicitor to act on your behalf. Legal Aid may well be available for you to make this application.
This question has been answered by Lucy Vaughan, a Child Care Solicitor with GHP Legal. If you would like to speak to someone about this or any other legal matter, please visit our website www.ghplegal.com and use the contact us form, or call us on: Wrexham 01978 291456, Llangollen 01978 860313, Oswestry 01691 659194