Having a big heart may be a prerequisite of successful fostering…….
but, for many carers, becoming a foster carer is increasingly a specialist career choice requiring expert training, a range of diverse skills and qualifications and, not surprisingly, a reasonable fee in addition to recognised allowances.
There is a growing recognition that many children who are no longer able to stay with their birth family or relatives can be helped to achieve the best in life by being part of a foster family.
Not having to worry about that the financial cost of looking after a foster child is a great relief to many people considering fostering and often makes the difference in deciding whether to go ahead and take that step.
Being able to provide a loving, stable family environment to foster children is highly skilled and dedicated work – but like for any parent, it is expensive raising a child. That is why foster carers receive regular weekly or fortnightly payments for each child they foster.
Foster carers who foster for an Independent Fostering Agency receive a fee and allowance to cover the cost of caring for a child, this is on average £380 for each child.
You could get more if the child has specific needs – you have certain skills – you make a particularly large commitment to fostering
There’s a fixed tax exemption of up to £10,000 per year (less if for a shorter period) which is shared equally among any foster carers in the same household. This means you don’t have to pay tax on the first £10,000 income you make from fostering.
On top of the £10,000 exemption, you also get tax relief for every week (or part week) that a child is in your care. This means you don’t have to pay tax on some of your earnings over £10,000.
|Age of child||Tax relief|
|Under 11||£200 per child|
|Over 11||£250 per child|
Laura is a foster carer for a 14-year-old for the whole of the year and for an 8-year-old for 10 weeks of the year. She doesn’t have to pay tax on the first £25,000 she earns:
Tax exemption = £10,000
Child 1 (52 x £250) = £13,000
Child 2 (10 x £200) = £2,000
Total = £25,000
If you foster, you’ll be eligible for National Insurance Credits, which counts towards your State Pension.
Payments for fostering don’t affect the amount of benefit you get if the payments come from either:
- a local council
- a voluntary organisation
- a private organisation on behalf of the local council
Fostering Fees and Allowances
The difference between fostering payments and any other form of income is that foster carers are paid based on a fostering fee that has been tailored to the needs of each placement type. This income covers the cost of living for both you as the carer and the child or young person you look after. It’s because of this that foster carers’ payments are generally referred to as fostering fees and allowances.
Contact us to apply to foster children.
Foster Care News – UK
Fostering Agencies are looking for committed adults who can find room in their hearts and in their homes for children who cannot stay with their own family.
Here at Foster Care News, our hope is that by advertising the need for more foster carers we can encourage people to consider a career as a foster carer.
Families who foster share the belief that every child who needs it, must have the chance to feel cared for in a secure and loving family whilst their future is decided.
Here at Foster Care News you can find useful information about how to foster children, fostering allowances, short and long term fostering and how to find the right fostering agencies.
Use our free Foster Care News UK : Carer Enquiry – Fostering Agency Matching Service to find the best Fostering Agencies with vacancies where you live.
Want to know more about foster care? Take a look here: Foster Care News in the UK, on Twitter, Facebook and Google.