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As Children in Need day approaches, it has been revealed that almost one in 50 unborn children are classified as ‘children in need’, a statistic which has trebled in the last eight years. Figures for the 2018-2019 period highlight that 7,360 children are considered as vulnerable prior to birth, which has increased from 2,630 in 2010-11.

A child in need is someone who is at risk of their health and development being compromised by adverse childhood experiences, mainly as a result of abuse, neglect and family dysfunction. Family dysfunction can include the presence of mental health problems, substance misuse and domestic violence within homes, the latter of which has occurred in over 50% of child in need cases.

The Local Government Association has emphasised the importance of local authorities ensuring that “help is available” for families “before problems escalate”. Remaining in the care of neglectful, abusive or dysfunctional families can result in a child having emotional and psychological trauma, as well as places them at risk of physical and sexual abuse.

Unborn children feature on the list of children in need due to established concerns regarding their safety and welfare if they remain with their parents on being born. The concerns raised can be as a result of older siblings already being involved with local authority children’s services.

Our Abuse department at Ramsdens Solicitors have a wealth of knowledge in representing children in claims arising from neglectful care and abusive treatment, often where local authorities have assumed responsibility for that child.

If you would like a confidential discussion with a member of our team, please contact 0113 887 1834 to book a free information session at any of our offices.