Pre-proceedings meetings are meetings arranged by the Local Authority where their concerns are sufficiently serious that they are considering bringing care proceedings. You will be invited to the meeting and asked to bring a solicitor. The social worker will also attend with a solicitor from the Local Authority legal department. Discussions will take place about what needs to happen to avoid going to court.
The meeting is often the parents’ last chance to avoid care proceedings and to see whether an agreement can be reached. It is very important to take legal advice at this point.
Parents and other carers with legal parental responsibility are entitled to free legal aid for such meetings regardless of financial circumstances.