We're a 100% not-for-profit organisation committed to keeping children and young people in local care, near their birth families, friends and schools.
We've got a variety of fostering roles, and these are the payments you can get.
General fostering allowances
General fostering allowances are paid to carers doing short-term, long-term and emergency fostering.
The financial support we provide is made up of 2 parts:
- A weekly allowance based on the age of the child.
- A weekly fee based on your skill level - your skill level will be discussed with you at the home visit stage. It ranges from Level 1 to Level 4, with Level 4 being the highest.
The basic weekly allowance for 2021–2022, paid per child per week, is:
0–4 year-old child: £138
5–10 year-old child: £152
11–15 year-old child: £173
16 years old or over: £202
The basic weekly fee for 2021–2022, paid per child per week, is:
Level 1: no fee
Level 2: £75
Level 3: £140
Level 4: £280
You'll also receive the following additional allowances for each fostered child or young person in your care:
- Birthday allowance – equivalent to 1 week's basic weekly allowance.
- Festival allowance – equivalent to 1 week's basic weekly allowance.
- Holiday allowance – 1 per year, equivalent to 2 weeks' basic weekly allowance.
Supported lodgings allowances
The fee for carers who provide supported lodgings for young people is:
- £235 per week per young person
Our Place fostering allowances
The fees for Our Place foster carers are:
- £420 a week plus child allowance - when a young person is living with you
- £13.20 an hour - when you're working at the Our Place Hub
Parent and child fostering allowances
The fee for carers who look after a parent and child is:
How are foster carer allowances paid?
Basic allowances are paid fortnightly through BACS (bank transfer).
Festival, birthday and holiday allowances are paid at the relevant times on top of your basic weekly allowance payment.
Tax and National Insurance for foster carers
Most foster carers do not pay tax on their fostering income due to the Qualifying Care Relief scheme.
Foster carers are self-employed and have to submit a tax return at the end of the financial year. An end of year income statement is provided by the council. This can be done through the online Self Assessment tax return at no cost.
Foster carers qualify for Class 2 National Insurance Contributions at £2.95 per week. This provides access to state maternity benefits, a state retirement pension and state bereavement benefits.
Foster carers can apply for Class 3 National Insurance Credits at the end of the tax year. This counts towards state retirement pension only.
Foster Carers may qualify for Working Tax Credits depending on their income, and fostering income is disregarded when claiming some benefits.
HM Revenue and Customs offer an e-learning course on tax and National Insurance for foster carers:
Claiming benefits as a foster carer
The benefits you can claim as a foster carer will be specific to your individual circumstances. You should always check with the agency issuing the benefit to get up to date guidance for your situation.
However, the Fostering Network have some general guidance and information about claiming benefits as a foster carer.