Despite significant changes being made to the availability of Legal Aid in April 2013, it is still possible to obtain Legal Aid for family matters. Hattons remain committed to providing services under Legal Aid and undertake a free assessment to any person seeking to ascertain their eligibility.
Legal Aid remains available to cover the cost of representation in Care cases. This means, when Social Services commence court proceedings seeking Orders such a Care Order or Supervision Order Legal Aid will be available to cover the cost of representation to parents and sometimes extended family members joined as a party to the proceedings. Parents will be eligible for Legal Aid regardless of their financial circumstances. Legal costs for advice can also be covered by the Legal Help Scheme prior to Court proceedings commencing for example when Social Services convene a Child Protection Conference or invite parents to what is known as a Pre-Proceedings Meeting.
Applications for Orders for personal protection including Domestic violence and forced marriage protection orders can also be covered by Legal Aid. For example, Legal Aid remains available to apply to the Court for a Non-Molestation Order to prevent a former partner or family member from inflicting further domestic abuse.
Legal Aid also remains available for advice and representation in private law family matters such as divorce and child arrangements subject to meeting additional requirements such as providing evidence of being a victim of domestic violence or there being a risk of child abuse in the case of proceedings relating to children matters.
If you would like Family Law advice from Hattons Solicitors or wish to undertake a free assessment of your eligibility for Legal Aid contact 0800 298 9690 or fill in the form here.