The lawyer for two Lev Tahor families says they will make their decision about an appeal within the week.

Chris Knowles represents two Lev Tahor families, whom we cannot identify due court restrictions. On Monday, a Chatham judge ordered 13 children be taken from them and sent back to Quebec to be placed in foster care.

However, Justice Stephen Fuerth is giving the parents 30 days to appeal his decision, which Knowles says they are seriously considering.

Knowles adds he is reaching out to other law firms with appeal experience before making his final decision.

In mid-November, 40 families of Lev Tahor, an ultra-Orthodox Jewish sect moved to Chatham from Ste-Agathe-des-Monts, Quebec.

Their move occurred just days after two parents were ordered by a Quebec court to hand over 14 of their children.

One of these children is now 16 and the Chatham judge ruled she will not be ordered to leave in 30 days should an appeal fail or the appeal period expire.

Justice Fuerth says an Ontario law prohibits social services from taking custody of a person who is 16 years of age, but this teen has an infant child who is one of the 13 that must leave if the appeal time lapses in Chatham.

Both of these families have already launched an appeal in a Quebec court against the original order in late November to remove all 14 children, including the young mother from the care of their parents.

That case is due before a Quebec court on Feb. 20.

Knowles and the two families have until March fourth to file an appeal in Chatham.