Child protection matters
You can get a lawyer to represent you for a child protection matter if:
- the Ministry of Children and Family Development (MCF), or a delegated Aboriginal agency, has taken or has threatened to take your child or children away from you, or
- there are guardianship or custody and contact or access issues related to a child in the care of MCF (foster care).
Parents Legal Centre
The Parents Legal Centre (PLC) focuses on helping parents resolve their child protection matters early and collaboratively. It offers services at any stage of the child protection matter, from the first contact with the Ministry of Children and Family Development (MCF) or a delegated Aboriginal agency until it's apparent the matter can't be resolved through collaborative processes.
The first PLC location opened in 2015 at the Vancouver Provincial Court at Robson Square (800 Hornby Street) to accept child protection cases from Vancouver and Burnaby. A second location is now open in Surrey at Newton Town Centre (7377 137th Street) to accept child protection cases from Surrey, White Rock, Delta (for cases handled by Métis Family Services), and parts of Langley.
- information and advice on options for resolving child protection issues out of court,
- legal advice and representation, where appropriate, through collaborative processes such as mediation and family case planning conferences,
- legal advice and representation at uncontested hearings,
- an advocate who will support you and go with you to meetings and appointments, and
- referrals to other services, including online resources and other public agencies.
You may be eligible for these services if:
- your income and assets fall within a qualifying range,
- you are a parent, guardian, or a person standing in the place of a parent, and
- the case can be resolved consensually.
If you already have a lawyer working with you on your child protection issue, a Parents Legal Centre cannot help you.
Aboriginal Legal Aid in BC
Find out more about Aboriginal legal rights in BC, including First Nations Court, Gladue rights, fishing/hunting/gathering, and your family's rights.Visit website