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Some of our more frequently asked questions

Some of our more frequently asked questions (FAQs) are answered below. If your query isn’t there, please contact us as we’d love to hear from you.

Most Popular Questions Asked

How do I make a referral to WillisPalmer?

Simply call us on 01206 878178 and tell us what your needs are and we will ask a few questions. The whole process takes about 5 minutes. Or you can use the "make an enquiry " buttons or email: and we will respond with CVs and proposals of work, usually within 24 hours. We will need the following information:

  • What type of assessment is required.
  • Who is being assessed, e.g. mother, father, grandparent etc.
  • Where the person/people being assessed live (town will suffice).
  • How many children are involved in the matter, their ages, where they live (town will suffice) and who they live with.
  • What the concerns are/reason for the assessment and whether the assessment is Court directed.
  • Whether an interpreter is required
  • Future court dates if listed, in particular any final hearing date.

Find out why we require certain pieces of information at referral stage.

How long do assessment reports take to complete?

Typically we can complete all types of assessments within care proceedings in six weeks from receipt of instructions. Fostering and adoption reports take longer, usually, 10-12 weeks.

How quickly can you allocate an expert?

We are usually able to allocate professionals to a case within 24 hours from receipt of all information. If you are looking to make a referral, please call us on 01206 878178.

Will I get a choice of expert?

We will endeavour to provide a selection of CVs so you can choose the expert you want.

How can I learn more about WillisPalmer’s services?

If you can’t find what you need on our website then we would be pleased to hear from you about what your needs are. Simply call  or email us and we will set up an appointment to discuss things further with you.

Do you charge by the hour?

No, most of our services are charged as a fixed fee. This means you know exactly how much you are going to pay at the outset. There are no surprises! If a piece of work is terminated early we just charge for the hours worked to date.

Can I see evidence of an expert’s qualifications?

Yes, these are set out in the  expert’s CV and we will have seen copies of the originals as part of our robust registration process.

Can I talk to someone who has previously commissioned WillisPalmer?

Yes you can. We can provide you with the names of commissioners who have used our services so you can hear for yourself about the quality of the work we provide.

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Knowledge & Resources

Keep abreast of the latest news in the children's services sector.

A look back at 2022 with WillisPalmer's Head of Practice, Lucy Hopkins…


2022 saw people trying to get back to some degree of normality following the Covid-19 lockdowns, restrictions and school closures that we had faced for the previous two years. However, the impact of Covid-19 continued and many services experienced, and continue to experience, backlogs and difficulties, including those services relating to children and families.

Social worker [...]
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John Lewis Christmas advert highlights important messages regarding foster care and looked after children


Every year people are excited to see what the theme of the John Lewis & Partners Christmas advert will be. This year's advert reminded our Head of Practice, Lucy Hopkins, of all the times she arrived at the homes of foster carers with children or young people who were anxious, scared, worried and hungry, having just [...]

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The WillisPalmer Christmas Tree Decorating Competition 2022

Who Wins..? You Decide!

We have two Christmas trees at the WillisPalmer office and this year the staff upstairs are going to compete with the staff downstairs to see who has the best decorated tree... and we want YOU to decide on the winner!

Tree 1 - Downstairs 

Tree [...]

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