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Emergency Protection Orders

The series will follow local authorities and families and will look at their roles and involvement in the adoption process. The first episode started with the local authority applying for an Emergency Protection Order for a two-day old baby who was still in hospital with her mother and showed the difficult decisions faced by the social worker making the application. An Emergency Protection Order is an “emergency” remedy to safeguard a child who is considered to be at risk of significant harm. It can be made by the court, to not only remove a child from the care of the parents, but also to have access to a child where the local authority needs to carry out an urgent child protection investigation. Although an Emergency Protection Order can remain in place for up to eight days, the court should always make the Order for the shortest possible duration. In a situation where a child has been removed from the care of the parents under an Emergency protection Order, the next step is will usually be an application by the local authority for an Interim Care Order, as was the case in the Chanel 4 programme. The very nature of an application for an Emergency Protection Order means that parents are often served with the papers only moments before the Hearing is listed in court. In this situation, parents will no doubt feel vulnerable and it is important that they obtain urgent legal advice and representation in the proceedings, which can be difficult when there is limited time available. At Atherton Godfrey we have experienced public law specialists who are members of the Law Society’s Children Panel and therefore recognised as having expertise in proceedings instigated by the local authority. We have years of experience in representing parents at short notice concerning urgent applications.
If you need urgent advice, please contact us today on 01302 320621.  

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