The family of Sophia Mason have been ordered to pay for the social worker’s fees

They begged social workers to save 8-year-old Sophia Mason. She was found dead in a bathtub on her second birthday in January 2016. The court in West Sussex had awarded social workers a substantial amount of money but refused to pay for the family’s legal costs.

Sophia’s mother, Joanne Mason, a solicitor, said: “We feel betrayed by the decision and we will continue to fight this decision and the injustice it brings to Sophia’s family.”

Image: Sophia Mason’s body

Her ex-partner, Gary Mason, said: “Sophia Mason was my second daughter, so I don’t have any issue with that, I have a problem with the legal system, they’re completely incompetent.

“I couldn’t believe that, from the bottom of my heart I couldn’t believe that when they found Sophia’s body and they could have looked for any reason why, no matter how they did it, why that shouldn’t have been recorded and why that wasn’t investigated or looked into properly.”

He described the family’s social worker as “unbelievably stupid” and said it was “completely ridiculous” that Sophia’s death had not been recorded during their three months of searching for her.

Image: Sophia Mason was found on the floor of the bathroom of her rented house in Sussex

He said his family did not want to pay for Sophia’s social worker’s fees because they were “unreasonably expensive”.

“We couldn’t have afforded the money for the social worker to come in, come out and do such a silly thing.”

Mr Mason added: “It’s completely ridiculous that the death of a little baby in the first month of its life has absolutely no importance whatsoever. We’ve had a solicitor involved and we wanted to know if there’s anything we can do to help Sophia.”

Image: Joanne Mason said she did not want to pay for Sophia’s social worker’s fees

Joanne Mason’s solicitor, Robert Stokes, said: “I’m not entirely sure how the ruling will be upheld. The judges are not supposed to be unsympathetic, but they are the judges and they are the men in robes at the end of the day.

“If they are allowed to decide this case, that could be completely ridiculous.”

A hearing will take place on Thursday.

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