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1.2.4 New Information about Open Cases


  1. Receipt of New Information
  2. Timescales 
  3. Outcomes 
  4. Recording 

1. Receipt of New Information

Where new information is received in relation to a child, who is an open case, the information should be redirected immediately to the relevant child's allocated social worker or, in his or her absence, the manager or practice supervisor in the relevant team.

Where new information is received from another agency or professional, the person concerned should be asked to confirm the information in writing within 48 hours and this should be acknowledged in writing by the relevant social worker within one working day of its receipt.

2. Timescales

Where any member of staff within Children’s Social Care receives new information relating to a child, who is an open case, the member of staff must pass the information to the allocated social worker or another person in the team immediately and within one hour at the very longest. 

Once received by the social worker or manager, the information must be recorded on the child's file and, in consultation with the manager as appropriate, a decision made about any further action required within 24 hours. 

3. Outcomes

The social worker, in consultation with his or her manager as appropriate, should consider and evaluate any new information received in order to establish:

  • The nature of the information and whether it raises any new concern
  • If so, how and why it has arisen
  • Whether the concern involves Significant Harm
  • Whether there is any need for urgent action to protect the child or any children in the household

This process will involve:

  • Discussion with the referrer
  • Consideration of any existing records including the Child Protection Plan
  • Involving other agencies as necessary

If the social worker considers that the new information raises new concerns about the child, he or she must consult with the manager or practice supervisor who may authorise an Single Assessment.

If there are indications that a child may be at risk of Significant Harm, the manager may also authorise a Strategy Discussion, prior to a Child Protection Enquiry and Single Assessment commencing. The manager may also authorise whatever additional actions are necessary to protect the child or others in the household from Significant Harm.

If there is suspicion that a crime may have been committed including sexual or physical assault or Neglect, the Police must be notified immediately.

Professional referrers should be advised of the outcome of the consideration of the information. Feedback on the outcome should also be provided to non-professional referrers in a manner consistent with respecting the confidentiality of the child.

4. Recording

Any new information received in relation to a child, who is an open case, must be clearly recorded on the child's file, together with a record of how the information was evaluated and any action taken as a result.