Available supports

Help and support in a Virtual Hearing

There are lots of ways to get help and support with your virtual Hearing. The Reporter and the Virtual Support Assistant will give you information on how to prepare and what to expect. You can also have a representative and/or a lawyer attend your virtual Hearing. A representative could be a trusted adult, friend or professional advocate.

Here’s different types of help and support…

RAVHI the Robot and the Virtual Support Assistant are there to help with any questions you can about Virtual Hearings. You can contact them here.

You can speak to your Children’s Reporter. Their contact details will be on the letter sent to you about your Hearing. Contact details for each of our local teams is available here.

You can talk to an advocate. Advocacy workers are professional people who are there to help you tell the children’s hearing what you want – how you feel, what you think, and what you would like to happen. Children’s advocacy workers are separate from any other professional involved in your children’s hearing and they do not make any decisions about your care. Find out more at www.hearings-advocacy.com 

You can also speak to a lawyer (also known as a solicitor) who may be able to help you. Most children and young people don’t have to pay for this. You can contact the Scottish Legal Aid Board on 0131 226 7061 to get the name of a lawyer in your area or visit www.slab.org.uk.

You can contact Parentline by calling 08000 28 22 33 or visit their website.

You can speak to a Children’s Rights Officer. Your local Social Work Department should be able to help you with this.

A step by step visual story guide for children participating in virtual hearings. The guide can be viewed here.

An easy read guide is available for parents participating in a Virtual Hearing. We also have a printable version.

This information will help you prepare to attend a Children’s Hearing virtually.

You will be attending the Hearing using Microsoft Teams.

Two days before the Hearing is due to take place, you will receive your joining instructions – these will be sent to your email address.

If you do not have the right to attend the Hearing from the start, you will be asked to provide your phone number. This is so we can contact you while you are waiting to join the Hearing.

You can also contact the Virtual Support Assistant who helps make sure that the virtual arrangements run as smoothly as possible. You can email them at virtualhearings@scra.gov.uk

On the day of the Hearing
A Virtual Support Assistant will be on hand to let you into the Hearing. If you have a right to attend at the start, this will be from the time it is due to start. You may need to wait in the meeting ‘waiting room’ for a few minutes.

If you do not have a right to attend from the start, the Virtual Support Assistant will contact you to tell you when to join, as decided by the chairing panel member. This may be at any point during the Hearing.  It means that you will not need to wait in the meeting ‘waiting room’ from the start of the Hearing.

To join the Hearing click on the link in the email.

The Virtual Support Assistant will be alerted that you are in the ‘waiting room’.

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