This page provides information about legal advice and support for parents and family, and links to legislation related to child protection and out-of-home care – that is, the law that governs child removal, placement in care, children’s time in care, restoration, etc.

Legal support and advice and Legal Aid

Your rights


Your rights as a parent while your child is in care

Legal Aid NSW helps people with their legal problems. Their legal services include legal advice, help at court and family dispute resolution. They can help in most areas of criminal law, family law and civil law.


You may be able to apply for Legal Aid and be represented by a private lawyer. Click below for some Legal Aid information and a list of lawyers in NSW who could be Legal Aid funded.

Laws relating to child protection & out-of-home care NSW

The Department is required to comply with the law at all times. The main area of law that governs what the Department does (and many other agencies including OOHC agencies) is the Children and Young Persons (Care and Protection) Act 1998. If possible, try and spend some time getting to know this Act and how it works. Remember that the law is complex and nothing can replace legal advice about your particular situation. Getting a lawyer is very important. Even if you feel you can trust the Department and you feel there are lots of areas of agreement it is still important to get legal advice and legal representation in court.

The Act covers all aspects of care and protection legislation including removal, various orders, plans, variations of orders (s90), and what should happen while your child is in care.