Viability assessment done

wilsy
Posts: 14
Joined: Thu Sep 13, 2012 11:08 am

Re: Viability assessment done

Post by wilsy » Wed Oct 31, 2012 11:34 am

Hi David, thanks for your reply.

I believe they are recomending SGO. It was discussed that we could possibly foster for a year, and then go for SGO, but now i am under the impression they are going straight for SGO, although again, we havent been given much information about this!
At present we still have not discussed finance support, i had a call from the guardian 2 weeks ago and i was asked had this been discussed as yet, i told her no and the reasons why i felt uncomfortable discussing it, she said i shouldnt feel that way and she will insist someone speaks to me about it soon. But with just a week to the final hearing i am starting to wonder if this is going to be discussed prior to the hearing or not. I know i should bring the matter up now, but getting hold of any of the SW at the minute is difficult, having left messages, texts and tried calling a few times - even just for an update to the hearing yesterday, i dont seem to be getting any response! I dont know what to expect from the hearing next week, whether we will be called up, or just there in case.
I also expected to see some form of report that they had put together of myself and my partner, we were advised we would receive something, but we have not received a single letter from the LA regarding this case, the only official document we have received was a letter to confirm visiting dates with my niece.

Hopefully after a couple more calls this morning, the SW will come back to me, i have a contact number for the guardian, so will try her if no repsonse later today. Im not entierly sure who i should or shouldnt call to find out information!

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David Roth
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Joined: Thu Aug 10, 2006 10:14 am

Re: Viability assessment done

Post by David Roth » Wed Oct 31, 2012 12:29 pm

Hi Wilsy

It's good news that the guardian has raised the issue of support, as it is so important that this is raised before the final hearing.

Do you have an email address for the guardian, if you can't get her on the phone? Guardians can be in court on other cases, so hard to contact, but may catch up on their correspondence afterwards. If you can detail the efforts you have made to contact the social worker about this, without anybody getting back to you, then the guardian might be able to follow it up for you.

I would suggest that you put in a written request to be assessed for financial support and support services to the social worker, and to the head of the department. You could explain that you would have liked to make this request earlier, but the social worker has not been returning your calls. If you are becoming the special guardian of a looked after child, the local authority has to carry out an assessment of your need for financial support and support services if you ask them to, and they would have to explain to the judge why they have not done it.

I know that you are reticent about putting forward a request for financial assistance, but if they continue to ignore you this might be the best way of making sure it is considered.
David Roth
FRG Policy Adviser

wilsy
Posts: 14
Joined: Thu Sep 13, 2012 11:08 am

Re: Viability assessment done

Post by wilsy » Wed Oct 31, 2012 2:00 pm

Thanks David again, I will certainly put something in writing about the financial support.

I did have a brief call from the SW just now to advise on the outcome of yesterdays hearing, basically the judge has told the mum she will not be getting the baby back. BUT he wants her to come up with a very good reason for the final hearing next week of why he should allow her to have her back. He is not at all impressed at the recent actions of the mum, also the hearing has been reduced from 2 days to just one.
The reports all went through to the judge last week, and since then there have been further issues with the mum, that i hear will be brought to the judges attention before the final hearing next week. These are some quite serious issues, and i believe when the judge hears them he certainly will not allow the child to go back to her mum.
The SW said to me that next week in court, the judge will make one of two decisions, 1) he may advise that as the child cannot go back to the mother she should be placed with us immediately (apparently this has happened in the past, not always but i could) 2)the SW will gain a care order and continue with the necessary arrangments to have the child placed with us, so again im not entierly sure how this will pan out, or what to expect from next week. We have been told to be on standby should the judge want to meet us, but we do not need to actually be in court.

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David Roth
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Joined: Thu Aug 10, 2006 10:14 am

Re: Viability assessment done

Post by David Roth » Tue Nov 06, 2012 9:53 am

Hi Wilsy

It sounds as though the case is becoming clearer, although you still don't have all the information you need.

The court does have two decisions to make. The first is whether the threshold criteria have been met, ie has it been proved that the baby has suffered or is at risk of suffering significant harm. If this has been proven, then the judge will decide that the baby can't go back to the parents who caused the harm or failed to protect the baby.

The second decision will be disposal, ie what order should the court make in order to safeguard the child's welfare and future. The two options would seem to be a care order, with plans to place with you, or a special guardianship order made out to you. So, the outcome looks like being the child is placed with you, the question is really under what legal order.

If the child is placed with you under a care order, then you would be foster carers for the child, but the expectation would probably be that you would apply for special guardianship at an early date. However, in the meantime you should receive full fostering support - the full fostering allowance, training, a support social worker for yourselves, etc. You would also have more chance to negotiate what support you would get as special guardians for the child.

If the court wants to dispose this week by making a SGO right away, you should make the point that you have not been assessed on your support needs, and ask for that assessment to be done before the order is made.

However it is done, there should be some time allowed for you to get your home ready for the arrival of a baby, with some financial support from the local authority where necessary to do this. There would probably also be a 'transition' period - a few days, maybe a week - where you would become intensely involved in the baby's life, taking over the caring role from the current foster carers, until the move could happen.

It is good news that it appears as though the outcome is going to be that the baby is placed with you, but you must make sure you get the support you need to do this.
David Roth
FRG Policy Adviser

amanda39
Posts: 1
Joined: Sat Mar 11, 2017 7:49 am

Re: Viability assessment done

Post by amanda39 » Mon Mar 13, 2017 5:02 pm

Hi there , I wondered if anyone could offer me advice?
Iv recently been contacted from my parents who live quite a distance away from me to inform me that socail services are involved in my nephew life at the mo! I have no contact with my nephew due to him being brought up by his gran on his dads side and the fact that I dont live anywhere near...I tried to arrange access to see him when he was younger but his gran refused ....in hindsight I wish I pushed it...hes now 9 and by all account bot been looked after very well...
I contacted socail services to inform them that although I dint have a relationship with him if there's talk of him going into care then id be more than happy to step in. They told me he was on their books as a 'child in need' she couldn't go into details as his gran wouldn't give her consent to inform me but I got the impression things aren't great.
She asked if she could come and see us to do an assessment to have in case things Deteriorate....we live a good 4 hours distance away so I was quite shocked they were prepared to do that unless they think that this could be a real possibility!
Anyone know if this is routine? Or am I right in thinking that things could be pretty serious?
Any advice really appreciated!!!!!

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Suzie, FRG Adviser
Posts: 647
Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2011 11:25 am

Re: Viability assessment done

Post by Suzie, FRG Adviser » Wed Mar 15, 2017 12:56 pm

Dear Amanda39,

Welcome to the Friends and Family Carers Forum.

Have a look at our advice sheet about kinship fostering assessments .
It is very detailed-explaining what is expected of foster carers and how you will be assessed. You might want to read this before the social worker visits you.

We also have some helpful FAQ's for relatives who might be taking on the care of a child

As Irene says, it would be useful to know why your nephew is considered to be a child in need . This could be due to his own health difficulties, due to trauma he suffered as a young child while still with his birth parents or due to something he is experiencing at home now.

Why is the placement with grandmother breaking down? What support has been needed to care for him and what will be offered to you as a carer?

I hope this helps but if you have any questions, please post back. You could also call our advice line on 0808 801 0366.

Best wishes,

Suzie

MBA2019
Posts: 2
Joined: Thu Apr 04, 2019 4:00 pm

Re: Viability assessment done

Post by MBA2019 » Tue Apr 30, 2019 9:44 pm

Hi im new to the forum & i could do with some advice.
My granddaughter lost her mum whilst placed on a section 20. Ss now have pr & myself & her grandad have had failed assessments. (We are divorced) They have lied on my assessment & im in the process of having it adjusted. I asked for my assessment to be done by an isw so they got someone else in their department to do it, which is not an isw. I'm up against a brick wall as i dont work & i can't get legal advice. I could if my assessment was positive.
Her grandad has been granted an isw by the judge. I've worked with the sw but yet their not putting me forward for party to proceedings. I feel so helpless i don't know where to turn.
Please can someone give me some advice. Many thanks

MBA2019
Posts: 2
Joined: Thu Apr 04, 2019 4:00 pm

Re: Viability assessment done

Post by MBA2019 » Tue Apr 30, 2019 9:53 pm

Hi im new to the forum & i could do with some advice.
My granddaughter lost her mum whilst placed on a section 20. Ss now have pr & myself & her grandad have had failed assessments. (We are divorced) They have lied on my assessment & im in the process of having it adjusted. I asked for my assessment to be done by an isw so they got someone else in their department to do it, which is not an isw. I'm up against a brick wall as i dont work & i can't get legal advice. I could if my assessment was positive.
Her grandad has been granted an isw by the judge. I've worked with the sw but yet their not putting me forward for party to proceedings. I feel so helpless i don't know where to turn.
Please can someone give me some advice.
My granddaughter is placed with a family member & ss want my granddaughter to be adopted.
Many thanks

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Suzie, FRG Adviser
Posts: 647
Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2011 11:25 am

Re: Viability assessment done

Post by Suzie, FRG Adviser » Wed May 29, 2019 2:09 pm

MBA2019 wrote:
Tue Apr 30, 2019 9:53 pm
Hi im new to the forum & i could do with some advice.
My granddaughter lost her mum whilst placed on a section 20. Ss now have pr & myself & her grandad have had failed assessments. (We are divorced) They have lied on my assessment & im in the process of having it adjusted. I asked for my assessment to be done by an isw so they got someone else in their department to do it, which is not an isw. I'm up against a brick wall as i dont work & i can't get legal advice. I could if my assessment was positive.
Her grandad has been granted an isw by the judge. I've worked with the sw but yet their not putting me forward for party to proceedings. I feel so helpless i don't know where to turn.
Please can someone give me some advice.
My granddaughter is placed with a family member & ss want my granddaughter to be adopted.
Many thanks
Dear MBA2019

Thank you for your post and welcome to the family and friends carers discussion forum.

I see that you posted some time ago but, unfortunately, you have not received a response to your post and I apologise for the delay due to workload pressures.

You say both you and your granddaughter’s grandfather failed assessments and you requested a fresh assessment which was carried out by a social worker in children’s services. Sometimes if a social worker from children’s services carry out the assessment they are not linked to the case and do not work on it. Do you know why the grandfather has been allowed a further assessment by an independent social worker but not you?

Children’s services would not normally put you forward to be a party to the proceedings. You would need to make that application yourself. You can do this by submitting an application on a form C2 to the court, you must include the case number. It is possible to explain in a short statement why you wish to be joined and ask the court to decide on whether you should have an assessment by an independent social worker (ISW). It will be for the judge to decide and who will take account the reasons that you had a negative assessment as well as your views on the assessment. There has been recent guidance regarding the proper assessment of family and friends carers and you can look at a recent court of appeal decision in case of Re P-S(Children) [2018] EWCA Civ 1407. This case deal with extending time limit outside the 26 week limit.

Please read our advice sheets Care (and related) proceedings and DIY Special Guardianship Orders - information for family and friends carers which you may find helpful.

Before making a decision that a child should be adopted the court will want to be satisfied that is the only option for the child concerned and the best thing for the long term. The court will normally want to know that all family members or other connected persons have been properly assessed.

Should you wish to speak to an adviser then please telephone our free advice line on 0808 801 0366. The advice line is open from 9.30am to 3pm Monday to Friday.

I hope this is helpful.

Best wishes

Suzie

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