If you are going to a Children’s Hearing, do you know you have some really important rights?
You have the right to:
- To give your views to the Panel Members – and have them taken into account.
- To provide information that you want the Hearing to consider.
- If you are able to understand it, you have the right to be given all the information that the Hearing has.
- You can bring someone with you to help you discuss things in your Hearing. This can be anyone you choose – for example, a friend, relative, or any trusted person who you feel will support you.
- You can bring a lawyer (solicitor) as well if you wish.
- To have the number of people attending the Hearing (at the same time) to be kept to as few as possible.
- To appeal against the decision made by the Hearing within 21 days from the date of the Hearing.
- To request another Hearing which can take place 3 months after your last Hearing (if your Hearing made or kept a Compulsory Supervision Order in place).
At your Hearing you can also:
- Ask the Hearing to stop for a while if you would like to take a break.
- Ask the Hearing to stop until another day (sometimes called ‘continuing the Hearing’) if you feel that the Hearing should not make a decision yet (for example, if you need to get more information to give the Panel Members).
- Ask to speak to Panel Members on your own, or only with someone you want to be there with you, for part of the Hearing.
The Hearing will decide whether to agree to any of these things.
Want more information about your rights?
- You can speak to your Children’s Reporter. Their contact details will be on the letter sent to you about your Hearing.
- 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 speak to a Children’s Rights Officer. Your local Social Work Department should be able to help you with this.
You can read our ‘Your Rights‘ flyer which covers rights in a Hearing, where to get more information and how to complain.
The Scottish Child Law Centre provides free legal advice to children and young people. You can contact the under 21’s freephone number on 0800 328 8970, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit their website at www.sclc.org.uk.
Your rights are protected under law, which means no one can take your rights away from you.