Family & Children Reports - Social Assessment Reports

Family & Children Reports

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Social Assessment Reports

Social assessment reports are used in the Children’s Court to assist a Separate Representative in representing the child and their best interests.

The report is written by a qualified Family Consultant and is generally requested to provide an independent opinion on the child’s circumstances, and to give recommendations to assist the Court when making decisions to protect the child’s best interests.

The report will be considered by the Court when deciding whether a Child Protection Order is to be put in place. It contains information regarding the child’s history, living situation, views and wishes (depending on their age) and uses this information to produce an informed and independent recommendation regarding the protection of the child. 

Social Assessment Report Inclusions

These interviews will generally occur in the Department of Child Safety offices, over the phone or at the parent/guardian’s home if reunification is to occur.

The Separate Representative will provide the report writer with the Court documents filed by the Department of Child Safety, and these will also be considered in the report writing process.

Once completed, the report will be provided to the Separate Representative who will file it in the Children’s Court. It will also be provided to each party in the proceedings or their legal representative, including the Department of Child Safety.

The Social Assessment Report will need to include the following:

  • Information regarding each parent and their family history;
  • The child’s family history and relationship with the parents, siblings and extended family members;
  • The child’s views and wishes (dependent on their age and if they are willing to tell the report writer);
  • The child’s personal history and emotional attachments;
  • Any significant issues within the family that have impacted the child’s best interests;
  • The child’s needs;
  • The child’s current circumstances; and
  • The report writer’s recommendations regarding whether a Child Protection Order should be made, and other matters regarding contact and placement, considering the above information.

The report writer will prepare the Social Assessment Report based on information collected through various interviews. Interviews may be conducted with:

  • The child with a parent, Child Safety Officer, foster carer, guardian or any other significant person or alone (depending on their age);
  • Both parents and any current partners; The Child Safety Officer assigned to the child’s case;
  • The child’s current cares or significant people; and
  • Other relevant professionals.

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