Recruiting foster carers - legislation

Law and standards

The Law and Standards sections apply to England only.

A brief indication of how the law changed upon full implementation (September 2004 and September 2005) of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 is inserted in italics.

Compliance with statute and regulations is mandatory; compliance with standards is taken into account by the CSCI registering and inspecting fostering service providers.

Human rights

Potential foster carers have the right not to be discriminated against on the basis of age, disability, race, gender, or sexual orientation.

National Minimum Fostering Standard 7

The fostering service must ensure that children and young people and their families are provided with foster care services which value diversity and promote equality.

Fostering Service Regulations 2002 - Regulation 26 [6]

A fostering service provider may not employ a foster carer or member of the household of a foster carer approved by that fostering service provider - subject to certain exceptions [Regulation 20 [7] and 50 [7].

Regulation 28 [1]

A foster carer cannot be approved by two different fostering service providers [local authority or independent] at the same time.

If a foster carer wishes to transfer from one fostering service provider to another s/he must request that their approval by their existing fostering service provider be terminated.

Transfers of foster carers between fostering service providers

The Fostering Network has a protocol for transfers, which is intended to ensure continuity for children in placement, minimise the length of time taken in the transfer process, and agree finance arrangements to ensure carers do not suffer a loss of income as a result of the transfer process.

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