Most County Social Welfare Board cases are handled in a "Case Negotiation Meeting" (In Norwegian forhandlingsmøtesak). This is an illustration of a meeting room.
The boards serve as an impartial and independent judiciary body in Norway. The boards will deal with cases in a satisfactory, expeditious, and confidence-inspiring manner. All parties will be heard, treated equally and receive the necessary guidance. The parties will be informed about the arguments presented by the counterpart, and given an opportunity to respond. All parties may present evidence, which may include witnesses. They may ask questions to the counterparty's witnesses.
The County Social Welfare Boards never initiate a case involving compulsory measures. Each case is initiated by the parties of the case. The parties in the case may include the municipality child welfare service (In Norwegian kommunens barneverntjeneste), or the parents in the child welfare case. The County Social Welfare Boards are a state body and serve as an impartial and independent tribunal. The boards are free of influence when they carry out their judicial functions.
Decisions by the Boards are made pursuant to the following Norwegian laws:
Barnevernloven is The Child Welfare Act.
Helse- og omsorgstjenesteloven is the Act Relating to Municipal Health and Care Services.
Smittevernloven is the Act Relating to the Control of Communicable Diseases.
There are 10 boards in Norway. A central office is responsible for the administrative management of the boards. The boards are an agency within the Norwegian Ministry of Children and Equality (In Norwegian Barne- og likestillingsdepartementet).