The children care system which the state government has implemented last year in their budget has failed to follow through.

The budget of $23 million has been allocated over four years for 100 professional therapeutic carers to live with and help children with problematic behaviour who cannot live in foster care or residential care.

The government has conceded that the new program has been delayed because of legal issues surrounding the payments of professionals to effectively work 24 hours a day.

In the children care system, the first 10 professionals were supposed to start by the end of June, at a cost of almost $1 million. The idea was to pay professionals such as social workers and psychologists to provide therapy and a home at the same time.

The Department of Human Services is seeking legal advice to try to resolve the problem.

Community Services Minister Lisa Neville said the government still wanted to set up the program in the next financial year.

Opposition community services spokeswoman Mary Wooldridge said the most challenging and neglected children were not getting the specialist care they needed because of ''bureaucratic bungling''.