Raffaele & Associates LLC

MyKidsLawyer: The Legal Team for Students, Kids & Families.

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Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania

Legal Assistance for Children: What You Need to Know

When a family faces legal issues affecting a child, it is essential to have the right legal representation to ensure that their rights and interests are protected. Finding a lawyer that specializes in children’s legal issues can feel overwhelming, but you can simplify the process by considering several important factors as you seek legal assistance for children.

Parents or guardians must make the decision to obtain legal representation for a child, and it’s a decision that can have lasting consequences. Whether it’s a school disciplinary violation, a juvenile delinquency case, or a special education hearing, a child’s future is at stake, and having the right legal representation can make all the difference. Here are the questions to ask as you hire an attorney for your child.

Experience and expertise

The first and most crucial factor to consider when looking for legal representation for children is the lawyer’s experience and expertise in handling children’s legal cases. You should look for a lawyer who has experience working with children and families and consequently has a deep understanding of the legal issues that affect children. It’s also important to consider that lawyer or firm’s experience with the different kinds of legal frameworks that apply simultaneously to children—for example, school district policies and state laws that address the same conduct.

Focus on children’s law

Not all lawyers have done the work to be able to competently handle to handle children’s legal issues, so it is essential to look for a lawyer who focuses on children’s law. A lawyer who works frequently on legal issues affecting children will have the necessary knowledge and experience in handling legal issues that affect children, such as special education, educational civil rights, guardianship, and juvenile law.

Communication skills

One of the most important things that an attorney can provide for you as you navigate the unfamiliar and daunting process of handling your child’s legal issues is a clear understanding of what’s going on. A lawyer with excellent communication skills will be able to explain the legal issues and the legal process in a way that parents—and, perhaps more importantly, the child—can understand. Where the child is a person with a disability, it’s also important to find a lawyer who has an understanding of how a child’s differences may affect their ability to understand so that the lawyer can communicate effectively with the child.

Compassion and empathy

Children facing legal issues can be under a lot of stress and anxiety, so we recommend looking for a lawyer who has compassion and empathy for the child and their family. The lawyer should be able to understand the child’s emotions and feelings and provide them with the information, support, and guidance they need to navigate the legal process.

Availability and accessibility

It is crucial to find a lawyer who is available and accessible when seeking legal representation for children. The lawyer should be able to respond promptly to calls and emails and be available to meet with the child and their parents when necessary. The lawyer should also be willing to work with the child’s schedule, especially if they are in school.


Legal representation for children can be expensive, so it is essential to find a lawyer who is willing to discuss their fees upfront, provide a clear understanding of the costs associated with the legal process, and inform you fully about the various payment structures available for different kinds of cases.

Recommendations and referrals

It is helpful to seek recommendations and referrals when looking for legal representation for children. You can ask for referrals from family and friends or seek recommendations from organizations that specialize in children’s legal issues. You can also check online reviews to see what other clients have to say about the lawyer’s services.

Professionalism and ethical standards

Representing a child necessarily means representing a person who is still growing into their ability to judge and understand situations in a mature and effective way. You therefore need a lawyer who exhibits professionalism and lives up to high ethical standards when seeking legal representation for children. The lawyer should be honest, transparent, and work in the best interest of the child. The lawyer should also understand the particular ethical standards that apply to representing minor children and how to navigate the issue of client confidentiality with respect to families and schools.

Additional Things to Consider When Deciding on a Lawyer

  • What kind of case does the child have, and what are the potential consequences?
  • Before hiring a lawyer, parents or guardians should understand the type of case their child is facing and what the potential consequences are. This information will determine what type of legal representation is needed.
  • What experience does the lawyer have in representing children in that type of case?
  • Experience matters when it comes to legal representation for a child. Parents or guardians should look for an attorney who has experience in representing children in similar cases.
  • What is the lawyer’s approach to representing children?

Parents or guardians should also understand the lawyer’s approach to representing children. Some lawyers may take a more aggressive approach, while others may focus on negotiation and mediation. Understanding the lawyer’s approach can help parents or guardians determine whether the attorney is a good fit for their child.

A Deeper Dive into the Basics: What is Legal Representation for a Child?

Legal representation for a child is when you hire an attorney to represent the child’s interests in legal proceedings. This can include custody battles, civil rights claims, juvenile court proceedings, and other legal matters that involve children. The role of the attorney is to ensure that the child’s best interests are being represented and protected throughout the legal process.

When Should You Seek Legal Representation for a Child?

There are several instances when parents or guardians may need to hire legal representation for a child or a court may appoint an attorney to represent the child (something called a “guardian ad litem”). These can include:

Juvenile Court Proceedings

If a child is accused of a delinquent act, legal representation is required to ensure that the child’s rights are protected and that they receive all of the process they are due, including a fair trial and the right to confront the witnesses and test the evidence against them.

Educational Rights

If a child is experiencing discrimination or is not receiving the appropriate education, legal representation can help ensure that the child’s educational rights are being protected and that they get the education they deserve.

Custody Battles

If parents are going through a divorce or separation and cannot agree on custody arrangements for the child, the court may sometimes appoint a guardian ad litem to ensure that the child’s interests are protected.

What Should You Expect From Your Attorney?

When you hire an attorney to represent your child, you should expect them to:

Advocate for Your Child’s Interests

The attorney should put the child’s interests first and ensure that they are represented throughout the legal process.

Communicate Regularly

The attorney should communicate regularly with you and your child, keeping you updated on the status of the case and answering any questions you may have.

Provide Thorough and Accurate Legal Advice

The attorney should provide legal advice and strategies for the case that evolves as they learn more about you, your child, and the circumstances of the case. The attorney should use that insight and experience to help you and your child understand the legal process and your options.

What Are Some Concerns Parents or Guardians May Have When Hiring Legal Representation for a Child?

There are several concerns that parents or guardians may have when hiring legal representation for a child, including:


Legal representation can be expensive, and parents may worry about the financial burden it may place on them.

Trauma to the Child

Legal proceedings can be traumatic for a child, and parents may worry about the emotional impact it may have on them. Finding an attorney who can mitigate those potential traumas is important.

Trusting the Attorney

Parents may worry about whether they can trust the attorney to represent their child’s interests and whether they will be able to establish a good working relationship with the attorney.

For all of these reasons, when you are seeking legal representation for children, it is essential to find a lawyer who has experience and expertise in handling children’s legal cases, focuses their practice on children’s law, has excellent communication skills, exhibits compassion and empathy, is available and accessible, offers affordable services, has good recommendations and referrals, and consistently adheres to high ethical standards. By considering these factors, you can find the right lawyer to protect your child’s rights and interests and help them navigate the legal process with confidence.

The law firm of Raffaele & Associates is dedicated to serving the legal needs of students, children, and families. Our trusted team of attorneys, education consultants, and staff provide skilled, thoughtful representation for your case. By combining the experience and sophistication of a large firm with the personal attention and service of a small law office, we offer you the best of both worlds.

Our team of professionals includes attorneys, an advocate, and support personnel, all working together to serve our clients and fulfill our mission through education, advocacy, and representation.

If you would like to get in contact with us, please contact us here. We look forward to speaking with you.

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