I am worried for myself or a child
If you need help in an emergency, please call the police by ringing 999.
If you are concerned about the immediate safety of a child, yourself or another adult, please call the police by ringing 999.
If you have a welfare or safeguarding concern about a child, you should report it to the child’s local authority children’s social care service.
While we are always more than happy to speak to you and to give advice, our involvement is to engage with you through family law proceedings. While we have a statutory duty to safeguard children though proceedings, we are not an emergency service nor do we have the legal powers of a primary child protection agency like your local authority children’s social care service. If we are concerned about the welfare or safety of a child, we will inform the court and contact children’s social care services ourselves. If a child is being harmed or at immediate risk of significant harm, we will contact the police.
Our lines are open during office hours on Monday to Thursday from 9 am to 5 pm and on Friday from 9am to 4:30pm, excluding bank holidays. Visit our contact us section to find our telephone numbers and other ways to contact.
We know that being involved in family court proceedings can be difficult for you and your children. If you are worried and need help for either yourself or for your child, the following organisations can help you.
Help and resources for children and young people
Our website contains information designed for children about what happens in family court proceedings and our role to advise children, families and the courts. The information has been produced with members of the Family Justice Young People’s Board and the Cafcass Family Forum who all have direct personal experience of the family court. Please encourage any children or young people you care about to look at this information and try to support them with the impact of being involved in family court proceedings. You can access this information on our 'Children & young people' webpages.
If they need professional help and advice, the following organisations for children and young people may be able to help:
Local authority children’s social care services also have useful resources for children and young people and there are other organisations that can help too. We have published a fuller list over on our resources for young people page.
Help and resources for parents, carers and family members
We have an extensive set of information, advice and guidance for parents, carers and family members where children are the subject of family law proceedings. This includes details on where to get legal advice, a range of tips and factsheets, and links to other organisations who may be able to help. Please visit our information and resources webpage.