Care proceedings can be brought by the local authority under section 31 of the Children Act 1989 if there is concern that the child concerned is suffering or is likely to suffer Significant Harm attributable to the care being given to the child, or likely to be given if an Order were not made, not being what it would be reasonable to expect a parent to give, or the child being beyond parental control. This test is referred to as the Threshold Criteria.
The NSPCC also has statutory powers to intervene on behalf of children in the same way as the local authority can - see the 'Using our legal powers' page of the NSPCC website for more information.
Where care proceedings are brought, the Court can make a range of orders under the Children Act 1989. If the Court is satisfied that the threshold criteria are met, it can make a Care Order
or Supervision Order