The expression "child law" has no specific legal meaning in Scotland but can reasonably be interpreted to refer to all aspects of our legal system which relate to the rights and obligations of children and those responsible for their care. Naturally, aspects of child law can be found in other areas, such as matrimonial law, the law of access and custody (now called "contact" and "residence", respectively), criminal law, education law and property law. Essentially, any part of our legal system which affects children can be described as "child law". Anyone who has any dealings with children can, and most probably will, be affected by child law.
For example, a parent who does not ensure that his or her child attends school can be prosecuted in the criminal courts; a child who is failing to thrive can be referred to the Children's Hearing System ("The Children's Panel"), which has wide ranging powers, including the power to remove the child from his or her family; a child who is causing concern at school or in the local community can be made the subject of an antisocial behaviour order, or his or her parents can be made subject to a Parenting Order; a family facing homelessness is afforded great protections if that family includes children under the age of 16; and children with special needs can have those needs "recorded" if that is necessary to make sure that those needs are met at school.
This is an extremely broad and rapidly changing area of law. If advice or representation is needed then it is best sought from someone with the necessary skills and experience. We provide high quality legal advice in relation to:
- The Children's Hearing System
- Referrals to the Sheriff Court
- Parenting Orders
- Antisocial Behaviour Orders (ASBOs)
- Education matters
- Acceptable Behaviour Contracts
- Child Protection Orders
- Child Assessment Orders
- Legal Representatives