CFAB Legal Advice Services
From our long history, we have seen a significant need for legal support with the complexities of children’s cases with an international dimension. CFAB now offers a range of legal services to meet this need.
Our Legal Advice Services are run by Maria Wright, CFAB’s Senior Legal Advisor and a solicitor with expertise in children’s law with an international element. She is also a doctoral researcher, currently completing a PhD into care proceedings with an international element. Maria worked as a solicitor in private practice for many years representing clients in a wide range of matters encompassing international child abduction, jurisdictional disputes concerning children, wardship, committal, forced marriage, and public and private law proceedings.
Advice Sessions or a Letter of Advice from CFAB’s Senior Legal Advisor
We can provide either a letter of advice or a 30 minute advice session which are charged at different rates (please see our fees for further information). Below are some of the questions that we are able to help with:
- A vulnerable child has been taken overseas – what legal steps could be taken to secure their return?
- What legal steps can be taken in the UK to make sure an order about a child is enforceable in another country?
- There is a vulnerable child who has only been present in the UK for a short time – can any legal steps be taken to protect them?
- A young person at risk of FGM / Forced Marriage has been taken overseas, what legal steps can be taken to secure their return?
- A pregnant person has travelled overseas, and care proceedings were due to be issued when the baby was born – what steps can be taken to ensure the baby is safe?
- Can a child be placed overseas on an interim basis to ‘test’ a kinship placement?
- Are Kinship carers living overseas entitled to support?
- How can an order made in another country about a child be recognised in England and Wales?
Advice and Guidance from legal experts based in the country of placement
The aim of this International Legal Advice service is to bridge the gap between UK family law and child protection proceedings with an international element.
When children are being placed overseas, advice and guidance from legal experts based in the country of placement, with their unique and in-depth knowledge of local child protection legislation, can ensure that children are placed in legally secure arrangements with family members overseas.
Advice from overseas lawyers can also be vital to guide decisions in situations where children are exposed to harm in cross-border settings, such as forced marriage, FGM, international child abduction or to facilitate children’s placements with family members overseas.
For this reason, CFAB has developed an expanding network of lawyers in different countries, who can help provide expert reports for use in child protection proceedings in UK courts.
Our partners may be able to assist with advice on foreign law in respect of the following issues:
- Legal frameworks for placing children with kin and in foster care overseas
- Parental responsibility, custody, and guardianship in the relevant jurisdiction
- Recognition of adoption orders
- Law surrounding child abduction and relocation
- Legal remedies in situations of forced marriage or FGM overseas.
To find out more, please send a brief enquiry to firstname.lastname@example.org. Our Senior Legal Adviser will then contact you within 24 hours to establish if this is an area where CFAB can provide advice. If so, relevant case details will be collected and recorded on CFAB’s system.
CFAB’s Legal Advice Service respects your privacy by not holding any personal information that is not strictly necessary for the provision of our services. Our Legal Advice Service operates entirely separately to CFAB’s case work and Advice Line services. We will hold any personal data we do need to collect securely, and for no longer than necessary. For more information on how we manage information, please see our Terms of Business.