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Fostering Niece & Nephew -Can Finances Cope?
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# 1
sharonr
Old 10-07-2008, 9:23 PM
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Default Fostering Niece & Nephew -Can Finances Cope?

My brother's children (aged 3 & 5) have been placed on an Interim Care Order with Social Services. It is possible that this will become a permanent thing and so my husband and I have put ourselves forward as foster parents.

Due to their ages I think I would have to give up my part-time job to be able to look after them and our own 2 year old. I am concerned about how we would cope financially and so was wondering if anyone can offer any advice on what allowances we would get, and if we were to eventually adopt, would we get any allowance then?

I know you don't get Tax Credits for foster children but I think I am right in saying that tax creds would increase for my child as foster allowance isn't counted as income.

I didn't like to bring this up with the Social Worker at first because I don't want them to think that I was only taking the children on to be able to give up my job. That isn't the case at all, we are concerned for the welfare of the children and would prefer to keep them in the family.

Any help or advice would be welcome at this stressful and upsetting time.


Last edited by sharonr; 10-07-2008 at 10:07 PM.
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# 2
Errata
Old 10-07-2008, 9:42 PM
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This is from my local council's pages on fostering, the amount paid may be different when children are fostered by a relative. HTH and good luck
QDo I get paid?AFoster carers receive financial support and allowances for each child they look after which covers the costs associated with looking after children in your own home.
Additionally, some carers receive an allowance based on their assessed skills in meeting the needs of more complex care needs. These allowances can range from 50.00 to 400.00 per week.
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# 3
Incisor
Old 10-07-2008, 9:59 PM
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[Comment addressed]

Last edited by Incisor; 11-07-2008 at 4:48 PM.
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# 4
UglyBetty
Old 10-07-2008, 10:33 PM
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If you were approved to foster your niece and nephew you would be entitled to fostering payments. You shouldn't be disadvantaged because you are related but the allowance would depend on their legal status. If you did eventually adopt you would be entitled to an assessment of your need for adoption support (Adoption & Children Act 2002), and this includes 'ongoing financial support'. This will depend on the needs of the children and your income - allowance are means tested but enhancements can be given for needs over and above the norm. Don't be afraid to be open with the social worker as it's best to be up front earlier rather than later. The children are likely to have experienced disruption and upset so it will usually be in their interests if you can find a way to be around for them if they are eventually placed with you.
If you decide to go ahead the assessment process can be stressful and can take between 3-6 months, because the local authority will want to ensure that the children have the best chance of a successful placement with no further disruption. Get some support and advice:

The Fostering Network www.fostering.net
The Post Adoption Centre www.postadoptioncentre.org.uk (they advise before and after adoption)
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# 5
c l a i r e
Old 10-07-2008, 10:35 PM
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Sharon, if you have a local CAB branch you could pop in or give them a call. They should be able to advise you of all potential entitlement. Good luck, i think its a great thing for you and your husband to take on the children. I wouldn't be afraid of discussing finances with the social worker though, they will want to be sure you can financially cope with the children if placed with you and should be advise you of appropriate benefits.
C'est la vie
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# 6
fabwitch
Old 10-07-2008, 10:38 PM
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A family member of mine has been assessed to foster her neice and has been told she will get 450 a week for long term fostering
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# 7
Zara33
Old 10-07-2008, 11:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fabwitch View Post
A family member of mine has been assessed to foster her neice and has been told she will get 450 a week for long term fostering
I must be doing something wrong then. I have had my nephew with me for four years now...i have parental rights/responsibilities and i certainly do not get anywhere near 450pw i would double check that figure tbh.

I know it sounds very strange that even though i have had my nephew for four years i am not classed as a foster parent :confused:
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# 8
Engadine
Old 10-07-2008, 11:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zara33 View Post
I must be doing something wrong then. I have had my nephew with me for four years now...i have parental rights/responsibilities and i certainly do not get anywhere near 450pw i would double check that figure tbh.

I know it sounds very strange that even though i have had my nephew for four years i am not classed as a foster parent :confused:
I am in the same position, my sister died 18 months ago and since then my niece has lived with my husband and I. We got no help from social services they weren't interested unless there was a crisis! We had to go through the civil courts to get custody of my niece and parental responsibility. The only financial assistance (if you could call it that!) is child benefit and 41 per month tax credits.

Everyone that has their niece or nephew living with them is doing a great thing and as we are they are putting the children first however if we were not able to take in our nieces and nephews they would go into the foster system, so we are saving the system a fortune but we don't qualify for these allowances.

Not sure about the rest of the country but in Scotland an allowance for kinship carers has been introduced. Initially I thought great but there is always a huge BUT! Each council can choose when and how to introduce the allowance as there is no guidelines to cover the whole country.

As Claire has suggested I would contact your local CAB and see what they have to say, check out the government website as well, they will have some information there as well.
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# 9
fabwitch
Old 10-07-2008, 11:18 PM
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Zara did you go through the Family Court to have your nephew. My Sister in law had to be assessed since last September by the Local Authority santioned by the Family Court because two sets of relatives offered the child a home. Because a Judge will decide soon who will get the child it has to go through the Fostering panel for long term fostering care. We have seen all the paper work it is definetly £450 a week. Most Local Authority if they can get away with it just get a relative to take a child to look after long term if the parents are not able to, otherwise if it goes through the Court and a Judge awards you custody of a child (neice in this case )they then have to pay you the full fostering fee of £450 a week
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Last edited by fabwitch; 10-07-2008 at 11:24 PM.
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# 10
Engadine
Old 10-07-2008, 11:25 PM
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It is probably different in England from Scotland but as we have full custody of my niece it is different from fostering and we are not entitled to any fostering allowances
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# 11
Zara33
Old 10-07-2008, 11:26 PM
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Been to court got residence of nephew. Like Engadine says we only get child benefit and child tax credit. We did at one point get kinship care allowance but since the residence order went through this stopped...we should be getting a residence allowance :rolleyes: certainly not holding my breathe for it tbh. As we no longer have any contact with social services.

I honestly believe that is a huge amount of money for one child per week.

Looking on the web i found this: http://www.bristol-cyps.org.uk/socia...allowances.pdf

Foster carers receive an allowance for each child or young person we place with
them. The rates from 1 April 2008 are by age as follows:
Age Of Child or young
person
Weekly Allowance
0 - 4 121.60
5 - 7 138.61
8 - 10 138.61
11 - 12 172.55
13 - 15 172.55
16 - 19 209.86

So i'm totally baffled as to where 450 comes from :confused:
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# 12
fabwitch
Old 10-07-2008, 11:35 PM
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The ammount is different for each Local Aurothity, in my Sister in laws case her neice is being considered for adoption and is a looked after child in foster care now but because two family relatives want to have the child this is the amount that they will be paid. It is more because she is 3 years old and will be classed as having had a very difficult first three years of her life and therefore extra expences are paid. With this fee they wont get child benifit they have been told. The amounts you have quoted is the minumum amount they have to pay but most pay alot more than this
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Last edited by fabwitch; 10-07-2008 at 11:40 PM.
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# 13
Engadine
Old 10-07-2008, 11:37 PM
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Zara, where in Scotland are you? Under the new legislation that the scottish parliament brought in you may be able to keep getting kinship carers allowance
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# 14
Zara33
Old 10-07-2008, 11:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fabwitch View Post
The ammount is different for each Local Aurothity, in my Sister in laws case her neice is being considered for adoption and is a looked after child in foster care now but because two family relatives want to have the child this is the amount that they will be paid. It is more because she is 3 years old and will be classed as having had a very difficult first three years of her life and therefore extra expences are paid. With this fee they wont get child benifit they have been told. The amounts you have quoted is the minumum amount they have to pay but most pay alot more than this
I appreciate that each authority is different but i was and to be honest am very naive when it comes to social services and fostering etc my nephew came to me when he was 3 years old after a child protection order was issued he did spend a few weeks in foster care then i became his carer. Every child that is removed from a birth parent has been removed because of difficult situations so i still can't understand why your niece is any different to my nephew ( not being stroppy) trying to understand how things are so different for each case.
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# 15
Zara33
Old 10-07-2008, 11:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Engadine View Post
Zara, where in Scotland are you? Under the new legislation that the scottish parliament brought in you may be able to keep getting kinship carers allowance
I'm in the Highlands.
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# 16
Zara33
Old 11-07-2008, 12:03 AM
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http://www.grandparentsasparents.org...pic.php?id=126

Found this not sure if this will help the op or any others.

Fabwitch i seriously hope i have not offended you...that was not my intention just trying to understand the minefield that is social services.
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# 17
Engadine
Old 11-07-2008, 12:03 AM
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It would be so much easier if there was a set policy country wide rather than each council being able to do what they want
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# 18
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Old 11-07-2008, 12:15 PM
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No offence taking, Local Authoritys are a nightmare and in our case the Authority took the child away from a relatitive where she was safe and put with a relatitive who we told them would abuse her. They said we couldnt have her as she needed to be in the same area as her parents. Four months later after many injuries and SA she was moved. We have written so many letters of complaint but each time get the responce under the child protection act we do not have to discuss this matter with you. All we want is for our neice to be safe. Well done for taking your Nephew, I hope you get some financial support sorted soon
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# 19
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Old 11-07-2008, 4:36 PM
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All Local Authorities will pay differing rates - it will largely depend upon their Council funding, budgets & finances.

I suggest that you look on your council's website, or speak to the social worker - it won't be the first time they have been asked the question about financial support, and as we all know, kids are not cheap to feed, never mind to clothe & provide everything else they need.
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# 20
Oldernotwiser
Old 11-07-2008, 5:54 PM
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450 per week will be a professional fostering payment which will be taxable. It's paid to thos who foster the more damaged and challenging children who require a great deal of imput which makes holding a job impossible. It's not the same as the ordinary fostering allowances which are paid to cover a child's expenses and are not taxable.
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