Family / I need a lawyer
I need family law advice
Unfortunately, Liberty is unable to provide legal advice on family law issues.
However, there are a number of organisations that specialise in family law issues, which may be able to help.
- Family mediation, which is a collaborative out of court process which aims to solve disputes about children and finance after a relationship breakdown;
- Applications for an order to prevent someone being violent, making threats or harassing you or your child, known as non-molestation orders;
- Applications for an order to exclude someone from your home known as occupation orders;
- Applications for restraining orders which prohibit an abuser from doing certain things e.g. making contact or visiting your place of work;
- If you or your child have been a victim or are at risk of suffering domestic abuse or violence;
- Where a court orders that a child will require their own legal representation in private family law disputes;
- Applications for forced marriage protection orders to prevent someone taking you abroad or making marriage arrangements etc;
- Legal action brought by the local authority for care orders (to take the child into care) or supervision orders (e.g. to require a child to live at a certain place);
- Cases where you are seeking to stop your child from being taken abroad or to get them returned;
- Exceptional cases, where the denial of legal aid would violate your human rights under the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) or EU rights to legal representation.
A family solicitor will be able to advise you on whether you qualify for legal aid and the other payment options available. They will also be able to help you apply for legal aid if you do qualify. Use the Legal Aid Agency’s find a legal aid adviser or family mediator tool or the Law Society’s find a solicitor tool to search for a family lawyer or mediator near you.
Alternatively, you can check whether you are eligible for legal aid for your case by contacting Civil Legal Advice by phone (0345 345 4 345), or through its website.
More information on finding a lawyer and funding your case is available here.
Organisations that can help you
Below is a list of organisations which can provide advice, support and information on family law and related issues, organised by group or theme.
General Family Law Advice
Resolution (previously Solicitors Family Law Association (SFLA)) can connect you with a trusted resolution lawyer for family law matters, including issues involving the breakdown of your marriage, care of your children, your home and your finances. Additionally, some lawyers are mediators, helping partners to work things out together.
Telephone: 020 3841 0300 (Monday to Friday, 9am – 5.30pm)
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org (or use the form directly below)
Online enquiry form: https://resolution.org.uk/contact-us/
Address: 91-95 Southwark Bridge Road, London, SE1 0AX
Family Lives (previously Parentline Plus) provide support for parents and families. They provide emotional support, information, advice and guidance on any aspect of parenting and family life, including all stages of a child’s development, issues with schools and parenting or relationship support.
Telephone: 020 7553 3080
Helpline: 0808 800 2222
Live Online Chat: https://www.familylives.org.uk/how-we-can-help/online-chat/ (Monday to Friday, 1:30pm – 9pm)
Find Family Lives’ offices: https://www.familylives.org.uk/about/contact-us/
Address: 15-17 The Broadway, Hatfield, Hertfordshire, AL9 5HZ
Reunite Foundation offers information, advice and support when reuniting families and tracing relatives with whom over the years, contact has been lost. Their services are free and they operate locally in the UK. They also help families by conducting international searches for family members.
Telephone: 073 0819 0819
Online Enquiry Form: https://www.reunite.org.uk/copy-of-missing-family-form
Rights of Women is a women’s voluntary organisation which runs two family law advice lines (one national and one for women in London). Their family law advice lines provide confidential advice to women on a range of family law issues including domestic violence and abuse, divorce and relationship breakdown, parental responsibility and arrangements for children, and lesbian parenting.
National Family Law line: 020 7251 6577 (Tuesday 7pm – 9pm, Wednesday 7pm – 9pm, Thursday 7pm – 9pm and Friday 12pm – 2pm)
London Family Law Line (this is also the Ascent advice line for women and advisors in London): 020 7608 1137 (Monday 10am – 12pm and 2pm – 4pm, Tuesday 2pm – 4pm, Wednesday 2pm – 4pm and Thursday 10am – 12pm and 2pm – 4pm)
Interpreting service: Able to offer telephone interpreting services on the London family law advice line. Also, on Thursday mornings, their advisor speaks Urdu.
Email: email@example.com (If in need of legal advice please use the phone numbers listed above)
Address: Rights of Women, 52-54 Featherstone Street, London, EC1Y 8RT
Advice on issues involving children
If you are worried your child will be abducted or if somebody is threatening to remove your child from your care, you can report this to the police by calling 999, or 101 if you do not believe that the situation is urgent.
If you are concerned about a child experiencing physical, sexual or emotional abuse or neglect, you can call the police by calling 999, Social Services by going to the relevant Local Authority website or the NSPCC (see below).
If you are looking for advice and support on issues relating to children, contact one of the organisations below:
Coram Children’s Legal Centre is a national charity, providing free legal advice and information on child, family and education law to children, parents, carers and professionals. Specialist legal advice and information is provided through their Child Law Advice Service.
Family or Child Law helpline: 0300 330 5480 (Monday to Friday, 8am – 6pm)
Education Law helpline: 0300 330 5485 (Monday to Friday, 8am – 6pm)
LawStuff (free legal advice for young people): https://lawstuff.org.uk/
Address: Coram Children’s Legal Centre, Coram Campus, 41 Brunswick Square, London, WC1N 1AZ
Reunite International Child Abduction Centre is a charity which specialises in parental child abduction, the movement of children across international borders and international family matters. They provide advice, support and mediation about issues surrounding the international movement of children.
Advice Line: +44 (0)1162 556 234
Telephone: +44 (0) 1162 555 345
Address: PO Box 7124, Leicester, LE1 7XX, United Kingdom
NSPCC provides advice to people who suspect a child is being abused and to children suffering abuse. They offer advice in many languages and have local advice lines and offices in different parts of England and Wales. Please see their website for more details on regional offices.
Helpline: 0808 800 5000 (Friday 8am – 10pm and 9am – 6pm at the weekend)
Childline: 0800 1111 (Monday to Friday, 7:30am – 3:30am and Saturday to Sunday, 9am – 3:30am)
Online Reporting Form: https://www.nspcc.org.uk/keeping-children-safe/reporting-abuse/report/report-abuse-online/
Contact NSPCC via SignVideo using British Sign Language: https://www.nspcc.org.uk/about-us/contact-us/ (Monday – Friday 9am – 6pm on PC, Mac, iOS (iPhone or iPad) and Android smartphone (4.2 or above)
1-2-1 Online Counsellor Chat: https://www.childline.org.uk/get-support/1-2-1-counsellor-chat/ (Monday – Friday, 7:30am – midnight and Saturday – Sunday, 9am – midnight)
Send an email using a Childline account (usually responded to within a day): https://www.childline.org.uk/login/?returnPath=%2flocker%2finbox%2f
Address: Weston House, 42 Curtain Road, London, EC2A 3NH
Family Rights Group provides confidential telephone advice and support for parents and family members, (including grandparents who are raising grandchildren) who cannot live at home or who are in the care system. They also provide legal advice sheets, guides and online forums where families can obtain advice, discuss issues and support each other.
Telephone: 020 7923 2628
Advice Line: 0808 801 0366 (Monday to Friday, 9:30am – 3pm)
Textphone: If you are deaf, hard of hearing or speech impaired – please dial 18001 and then 0808 801 0366
Advice Forums: https://frg.org.uk/get-help-and-advice/advice-forums/
Advice Sheets and Guides: https://frg.org.uk/get-help-and-advice/advice-sheets/
Address: Family Rights Group, Second Floor, The Print House ,18 Ashwin Street, London, E8 3DL
Gingerbread (previously One Parent Families) provide free information and support for lone parents on issues including maintenance, tax credits, benefits, work, education, legal rights, childcare and holidays. They also provide information about other organisations and local groups who might be able to help.
Telephone: 020 7428 5400
Helpline: 0808 802 0925 (Mondays 10am – 6pm, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays 10am – 4pm, Wednesdays 10am – 1pm and 5pm – 7pm)
Contact form online: https://www.gingerbread.org.uk/what-we-do/contact-us/
Gingerbread’s partner organisation in Scotland, One Parent Families runs the Lone Parent Helpline on 0808 801 0323 or chat online: https://opfs.org.uk/
Address: 54-74 Holmes Road, London, NW5 3AQ
Kinship (previously Grandparents Plus) is a kinship care charity in England and Wales. They provide advice to all kinship carers – grandparents, siblings, aunts, uncles, wider family members and family friends who care for children when their parents can’t.
Telephone: 03300 167 235
Helpline: 0300 123 7015
Online Contact Form: https://kinship.org.uk/for-kinship-carers/contact-our-advice-service/
Address: The Foundry,17 Oval Way, London, SE11 5RR
Children’s Rights Alliance for England protects the human rights of children by lobbying government and others who hold power, by bringing or supporting test cases and by using regional and international human rights methods. They provide free legal information and advice, raise awareness of children’s human rights, and undertake research about children’s access to their rights.
Telephone: 020 3174 2279
Enquiry Form: http://www.crae.org.uk/contact/
Address: c/o Just for Kids Law, Unit 2, Crystal Wharf, 36 Graham Street, London, N1 8GJ
Family Action is a charity which provides practical, emotional and financial support to those experiencing poverty, disadvantage and social isolation across the country. They tackle issues including domestic abuse, mental health problems, social isolation, learning disabilities, substance misuse, alcohol problems and severe financial hardship.
General enquiries telephone: 020 7254 6251
Family Action’s Family Line: 080 8802 6666 (Monday to Friday, 9am – 9pm)
Text message: 075 3740 4282 (Monday to Friday, 9am – 9pm)
Live Web Chat: https://www.family-action.org.uk/contact-us/ (Monday to Friday, 9am – 9pm)
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org (Monday to Friday, 9am – 9pm)
Find the right Family Action Service for you: https://www.family-action.org.uk/worried/in-your-area/
Listening Ear services for care leavers aged 18 – 27: https://www.family-action.org.uk/listening-works/
Address: Family Action Head Office, 34 Wharf Road, London, N1 7GR
Child Maintenance Service are an external organisation working for the Department for Work and Pensions. The Child Maintenance Service is for parents who have been unable to make a private arrangement for paying their child’s living costs.
Telephone: 0800 171 2345 (Monday to Friday, 9:30am – 3:30pm)
Welsh language: 0800 232 1979 (Monday to Friday, 9:30am – 3:30pm)
Relay UK (if you cannot hear or speak on the phone): 18001 then 0800 171 2345 (Monday to Friday, 9:30am – 3:30pm)
Address: Child Maintenance Service (England, Scotland, Wales cases), Child Maintenance Service 21, Mail Handling Site A, Wolverhampton, WV98 2BU
MATCH Mothers is a charity that offers non-judgemental support to mothers apart from their children in a wide variety of circumstances. This could be because of divorce and family breakdown, parental alienation, false allegations causing harm, and child abductions.
Telephone: 0800 689 4104 (Monday – Friday, 9am – 1pm and 7pm – 9.30pm)
Address: BM Box No. 6334, London, WC1N 3XX
Advice for young people
Become provide advice and support to help guide the lives of young people in care and care leavers. The Care Advice Line provides help, support, advice, guidance or simply someone who will listen to you on issues such as, how to make contact with family members and your rights in and out of care.
Telephone: 0800 023 2033 (Monday to Friday, 10am – 5pm)
Address: Become Charity, PO Box 151, Mailboxes Clapham Junction, 264 Lavender Hill, SW11 1LJ
Family Action runs a number of Young Carers Support Services across England taking a whole family approach and working collaboratively with parents, children and young people, the wider community, schools and statutory services. The services differ according to local need and provision but include direct work with young people and their parents.
Telephone: 0808 802 6666 (Monday to Friday, 9am – 9pm)
Text: 07537 404 282
Address: Family Action Head Office, 34 Wharf Road, London, N1 7GR
Family Action runs a Listening Ear services for care leavers aged 18 – 27 whether you’ve got something on your mind or you just fancy a friendly chat. Their care experience volunteers can offer you time and space to think things through without pressure or information about other support out there and how to get it.
Telephone: 0808 802 0222 (Monday to Sunday, 6pm – 12am)
Text: 07860 065 169
Urgent text: Text FAMILYACTION to 85258 (available outside of opening hours)
Address: Family Action Head Office, 34 Wharf Road, London, N1 7GR
The Mix is a free, confidential and multi-issue helpline for young people who know they need help but don’t know where to find it. They can talk by phone, email and webchat any day of the year. Helpline workers are trained to support each young person in their unique situation.
Helpline: 0808 808 4994 (open 7 days a week from 3pm – 12am)
Online Email Form: https://www.themix.org.uk/get-support/speak-to-our-team/email-us
One-to-one chat: https://www.themix.org.uk/get-support/speak-to-our-team (open 7 days a week from 3pm – 12am, however, chats may not be connected after 11:15pm)
Crisis Messenger: Text THEMIX TO 85258
Counselling Services for short term help with your mental health and emotional wellbeing (for those aged 25 years and below: https://www.themix.org.uk/get-support/speak-to-our-team/the-mix-counselling-service
Address: PO BOX 7777, London W1A 5PD
Childline are available to talk about anything. Whatever your worry, it’s better out than in. They are there to support you for a range of issues including living in care, being a young carer and having stepfamilies. There are lots of different ways to speak to a Childline counsellor or get support from other young people.
Helpline: 0800 1111 (Monday to Sunday, available 24 hours a day)
Message boards: https://www.childline.org.uk/get-support/message-boards/
Address: NSPCC Weston House, 42 Curtain Road, London EC2A 3NH
Voices in the Middle hosts community discussion boards to connect you with other young people who have either been through or are in the middle of their parents splitting up. They would love to talk about how you are doing, help with any questions and just hang out.
Community discussion boards: https://www.voicesinthemiddle.com/help-category/talk-to-us/
Papyrus run HOPELINEUK which is a confidential support and advice service for children and young people under the age of 35 who are experiencing thoughts of suicide, or anyone concerned that a young person could be thinking about suicide. If you are having thoughts of suicide or are concerned for a young person who might be you can contact HOPELINEUK for confidential support and practical advice.
Helpline: 0800 068 4141 (Monday to Sunday, 9am – 12am)
Text: 07860 039 967
Address: Bankside 2, Crosfield Street, Warrington, Cheshire, WA1 1UP
Advice about maternity and pregnancy
Maternity Action give free advice on rights at work, maternity pay and benefits to pregnant women, new mothers and fathers, trade unions, advisers and employers. You can receive advice on an extensive range of areas, including your rights at work, maternity leave and benefits, breastfeeding rights, redundancy, discrimination and dismissal.
Maternity Rights Advice line National (except London) – for advice on rights at work and benefits: 0808 802 0029 (Monday to Friday, 10am – 1pm)
London Advice Line: 0808 802 0057 (Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday, 10am – 1pm)
Advice line for NHS charging for maternity care: 0808 800 0041 (Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, 10am – 12:00pm)
Email Advice Service: https://maternityaction.org.uk/advice-form/
Address: Second Floor, 3-4 Wells Terrace, London N4 3JU
Birth Rights are a UK organisation dedicated to improving women and birthing people’s experience of pregnancy and childbirth through promoting respect for human rights – rights to dignity, autonomy, privacy, equality and inclusion. They provide free, accurate and accessible legal information and advice on human rights and the law relating to childbearing women.
Telephone: 0300 400 3400 (not a helpline number, general enquiries only)
Online Enquiry Form: https://www.birthrights.org.uk/contact-us/
Request Advice Online Form: https://www.birthrights.org.uk/advice-factsheets/request-advice/
Advice on domestic or sexual abuse
Women’s Aid is the national charity working to end domestic abuse against women and children. They provide advice and support for victims of domestic and sexual violence (including children).
Email (for information and support): email@example.com or contact a local domestic abuse service by using their Domestic Abuse Directory
Email (general enquires): firstname.lastname@example.org
Live chat: https://chat.womensaid.org.uk/ (Monday to Friday, 10am – 6pm, Saturday to Sunday, 10am – 6pm, average wait time is 25 minutes)
Find a local refuge or domestic abuse service (services specialising in support for Black and minoritised women), or connect to services in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland: https://www.womensaid.org.uk/domestic-abuse-directory/
Address: Women’s Aid Federation of England, PO BOX 3245, Bristol BS2 2EH
Domestic Violence Assist is the UK’s only registered charity helping arrange and apply for civil domestic violence orders, including Non- Molestation Orders, Prohibited Steps Orders and Occupation Orders free of charge. An Emergency Court Hearing can be arranged to apply on your behalf for an injunction order. They can also help with confirming whether you are eligible for public funding. Alternatively, you can check whether you are eligible for legal aid here: https://www.gov.uk/check-legal-aid.
Telephone: 0800 195 8699
Request call back: https://www.dvassist.org.uk/contact-us
Self-referral Form: https://www.dvassist.org.uk/self-referral-form
Address: Domestic Violence Assist, PO Box 959, Altrincham WA15 5RY
Rape Crisis co-ordinates the national network of Rape Crisis Centres across England and Wales. Rape Crisis provide specialist support and services for victims and survivors of rape or another form of sexual violence. Many Rape Crisis Centres provide specialist advocacy services – the specially trained workers who deliver these services are sometimes called ISVAs (Independent Sexual Violence Advisors or Advocates).
Telephone: 0808 802 9999 (Monday to Sunday, 12:00 – 14:30 and 19:00 – 21:30)
Online Contact Form: https://rapecrisis.org.uk/contact-us/
Find a Rape Crisis Centre: https://rapecrisis.org.uk/get-help/find-a-rape-crisis-centre/
Address: Rape Crisis England & Wales, Suite E4, Josephs Well, Hanover Walk, Leeds, LS3 1AB
The Survivors Trust is an umbrella agency for specialist rape and sexual abuse support services in the UK. Their agencies provide information, advice, support and therapy for victims and survivors of all ages, all genders, of all forms of sexual violence, sexual abuse and sexual exploitation, including providing support for partners and family members.
Helpline: 08088 010818
Telephone: 01788 550554
Support email: email@example.com
General email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Find support in your area: https://www.thesurvivorstrust.org/find-support
Address: The Survivors Trust, Unit 2, Eastlands Court Business Centre, St Peter’s Road, Rugby, Warwickshire CV21 3QP
SignHealth provide a specialist domestic abuse service to support Deaf people in finding safety and security. (This service was previously known as Deaf Hope)
Text: 07800 003421
Online Contact Form: https://signhealth.org.uk/contact/
Young Person and Adult self-referral forms: https://signhealth.org.uk/contact/
Address: 7-14 Great Dover Street, London, SE1 4YR
Karma Nirvana recognise that Honour Based Abuse is a form of domestic abuse. It can come in many forms, and although it is a problem in certain communities, cultural traditions do not make it OK. Abuse is abuse. No one – not even your family – has the right to control you or to harm you emotionally or physically. Help is available. Safe, confidential, free services exist for you. Karma Nirvana supports over 2,000 victims every year, many through their national Honour Based Abuse Helpline.
Helpline: 0800 5999 247 (Monday to Friday, 9am – 5pm)
Address: Karma Nirvana, PO Box 515, Leeds, LS6 9DW
Southall Black Sisters run an advice, advocacy and resource centre in West London which provides a comprehensive service to women experiencing violence and abuse and other forms of inequality. They offer specialist advice, information, casework, advocacy, counselling and self-help support services in several community languages, especially South Asian languages. Whilst the focus is on the needs of black and minority women, they will not turn any woman away who needs emergency help.
Telephone: 0208 571 9595 (Monday to Friday, 9am – 5pm)
Online Contact Form: https://southallblacksisters.org.uk/contact-us/
Refuge supports women, children & men experiencing domestic violence with a range of services. It also runs a range of culturally-specific refuge and community-based outreach and advocacy services, run by multi-lingual expert practitioners.
Helpline: 0808 2000 247 (available 24 hours a day. Interpreters for non-English speakers and access to BT Type Talk can be used for those who are deaf or hard of hearing)
Send an online message: https://www.nationaldahelpline.org.uk/contact-us
Ashiana are culturally sensitive, multilingual and globally aware. They run a specialist advice and advocacy service, and advise and support women and girls who are experiencing all forms of violence against women, including harmful practices such as forced marriage, honour-based violence, and female genital mutilation. The service can enable you to take action such as exiting a violent relationship, reporting to the police, taking out injunctions and finding safe housing.
Telephone: 020 8539 0427
IMECE Women’s Centre stands against all forms of violence against women and girls. They support and empower Turkish, Kurdish and Cypriot Turkish women and Black, Asian, Minority Ethnic And Refugee (BAMER) women to improve the quality of their lives.
Advice and Information line: 0207 354 1359 (Monday to Friday, 9.45am – 4.30pm)
Online enquiry: https://imece.org.uk/contact-us/
Address: 2 Newington Green Road, Islington, London N1 4RX
Hourglass are the UK’s only charity focused on the abuse and neglect of older people. They staff a free-to-call helpline for older men, women and their families suffering from the five forms of abuse: physical, psychological, financial, sexual or neglect.
Helpline: 0808 808 8141 (available 24/7)
Chat online: https://wearehourglass.org/hourglass-services
Address: Office 8, Unit 5, Stour Valley Business Centre, Brundon Lane, Sudbury, Suffolk, CO10 7GB
Advice for LGBTQ+ individuals
Galop works directly with thousands of LGBT+ people who have experienced abuse and violence every year. They specialise in supporting victims and survivors of domestic abuse, sexual violence, hate crime, and other forms of abuse including honour-based abuse, forced marriage, and so-called conversion therapies. They are a service run by LGBT+ people, for LGBT+ people, and the needs of the community are at the centre of what they do.
LGBTQ+ Domestic Abuse Helpline: 0800 999 5428 (Monday to Friday, 10am – 5pm)
Conversion Therapy Helpline: 0800 130 3335 (Monday and Tuesday, 10am- 4pm, Wednesday and Thursday, 10am – 8pm, Friday 10am – 4pm)
LGBTQ+ Hate Crime Helpline: 020 7704 2040 (Monday to Friday, 10am – 4pm)
LGBTQ+ Domestic Abuse Email: email@example.com
LGBTQ+ Hate Crime Email: HateCrime@galop.org.uk
LGBTQ+ Conversion Therapy Email: CThelp@galop.org.uk
LGBTQ+ Domestic Abuse Webchat: https://galop.org.uk/get-help/helplines/ (Wednesday and Thursday 5pm – 8pm)
Advice for victims of stalking
Suzy Lamplugh Trust runs the National Stalking Helpline, which gives practical information, support and advice on risk, safety planning and legislation to victims of stalking, their friends, family, and professionals working with victims.
Freephone: 0808 802 0300 (Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday, 9.30am – 4pm and Wednesday, 9.30am- 8pm)
Online Enquiry Form: https://www.suzylamplugh.org/forms/national-stalking-helpline-enquiry-form
Address: The Foundry, 17-19 Oval Way, London, SE11 5RR
Support at family courts
Support Through Court (previously Personal Support Unit (PSU) is a charity which provides support and guidance to anyone attending court in England and Wales. They can provide support prior to, during and after you attend court. They do not offer legal advice or representation, but provide practical advice on how the court system works, help individuals fill out forms, plan with them what they are going to say in court, attend court to take notes, and provide details of other specialist agencies.
National helpline: 0300 081 0006 (Monday to Friday, 9:30am – 4:30pm)
Phone numbers and email addresses for their various offices around the country: https://www.supportthroughcourt.org/contact-us/
Request an appointment at one of their Support Through Court locations: https://www.supportthroughcourt.org/
Address: Royal Courts Of Justice, Strand, London, WC2A 2LL
Advicenow provides useful information to those facing the legal process alone.
Address: 4th Floor, 18 St. Cross Street, London, EC1N 8UN
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