Foster Carers

Can Foster Carers claim Income Support? Sometimes you need more than the allowances and fostering payments to keep up with home payments so if you foster can you get benefits?

Foster caring is a career, looking after a child means that you have to fit your life around them to a certain extent. Just as you can have a career with your own birth children, you can have a career whilst fostering but many people choose to only work part time, from home or dedicate their lives to fostering.

There are no restrictions to becoming a foster carer, you will be individually assessed for suitability but factors such as sexuality and relationship status have less of an effect than you think. That being said, a single parent fostering may need more than just the fostering allowances and payments to sustain a household. When you foster, the money you receive is not necessarily seen as an income, but an allowances necessary to take proper care of the child, or children in your care.

If you Foster, can you still claim benefits?

Benefits and Income support may be necessary to keep up payments, when you foster your payments are counted as allowances for the child in your care, not an income. Therefore you are still eligible for any benefits or support that you are already receiving. If you are entering into a kinship fostering agreement then you may be means tested for the allowances, but this will not affect any financial support you are already receiving.

If you are getting income support or benefits, then if you take on any work over 16 hours a day this will be affected but fostering is exempt from this- even though it is more than just a full time job. If you work in between placements, you will need to speak to the job centre or DWP about your benefits; however if you have given up work or taken on part time hours to look after a foster child then they will not be affected up to £50,000 per year.

If you are interested in fostering please get in touch with us today. We are currently focusing on fostering in ManchesterLiverpoolLancashire and throughout the North West.