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3.2.8 Notification by Other Local Authorities / Placement Providers of Children Placed within Lincolnshire

SCOPE OF THIS CHAPTER

This procedure indicates the action to be taken when another local authority notifies this Directorate that they are intending to place a child looked after by them in a placement which is geographically within Lincolnshire.

AMENDMENT

This chapter was updated in June 2014 in line with the Children's Homes and Looked after Children (Miscellaneous Amendments) (England) Regulations 2013 in relation to notifications received from children's homes of children admitted to/discharged from the Home.


Contents

  1. Background
  2. Process


1. Background

1.1 It is a requirement within the Arrangements for Placement of Children (General Regulations 1991, in Regulations 10 and 12 that when one local authority places a child which it is looking after within the area of another local authority regardless of the type of placement, that it notifies that authority of the placement and provides certain information.
1.2

The primary purpose of this requirement is to enable the local authority within whose area the child is placed, to be able to maintain a Register of all looked after children resident within its area. This register is maintained through entry onto data systems and should include:

  • Those children which it is itself looking after;
  • Those children looked after by another local authority, but where there has been agreement that it will carry out some functions;
  • Those children who are looked after by another local authority and where the other local authority continues to carry out all functions.
1.3

Under the Children's Homes and Looked after Children (Miscellaneous Amendments) (England) Regulations 2013, the Manager of a children's home must notify without delay the area local authority (if different from the placing authority) of the admission to/discharge from the Home of any child.

The notification must state:

1.4 Where this Directorate is made aware by another local authority that they are intending to place a child within Lincolnshire, the other Local Authorities request that this Directorate should carry out certain functions on their behalf (e.g. supervision of the placement). However, no presumptions may be made prior to agreement at a formal Planning Meeting, where representatives of the local authorities concerned are present, and an agreement to carry out the functions required has been made and an undertaking to this effect given in writing.


2. Process

Notification of placements made, or to be made, within Lincolnshire

2.1 Any local authority or private or voluntary care provider must inform this Directorate of any placements which they propose to make within Lincolnshire.
2.2 It is likely that the first contact will be made with the local Children's Services Customer Service Centre or the fostering duty desk, who will input information on MOSAIC, entering all relevant fields. CSC should forward information to the fostering duty desk as should area teams receiving written letters.
2.3 The Association of Directors of Children's Services has agreed a standard for notifying other local authorities of a placement made within their area. Many local authorities have devised their own Forms which should conform to the ADCS guidance. Where the other local authority has such Forms a completed Form should be sent to this Directorate to the fostering duty desk or referred there if received elsewhere in the Directorate.
2.4 The other local authority should be reminded that they should also ensure that notification of the placement is also sent to Lincolnshire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG). However, Lincolnshire will also update LCCGs and Education colleagues on a regular basis.
2.5 Where it is subsequently decided to terminate the placement the placing local authority should inform this Directorate in writing of this, regardless of whether this Directorate has attended a Review meeting which decided on this course of action and/or whether they received the minutes of any meeting. MOSAIC should be updated as appropriate via the duty system.

Placements where the placing local authority request that this Directorate carry out certain functions on their behalf

2.6 Where a child is placed by another local authority within the boundaries of Lincolnshire, it is possible to negotiate for this Directorate to undertake some functions on their behalf. This is more likely to apply where the child is placed with foster carers and will usually extend to this Directorate supervising the placement on behalf of the placing local authority. For example, this Directorate would undertake to:
2.6.1 Supervise the placement and be satisfied that the welfare of the child continues to be suitably provided for;
2.6.2 Visit the placement regularly in line with ordinary expectation for Looked After Children.
2.7 Where the child is to be placed in another form of placement (e.g. Registered Children's Home; Voluntary Home; or Small Unregistered Children's Home), specific reference should be made to the Children's Homes Regulations 2010, before considering whether to agree to a request that this Directorate supervise the placement on behalf of the placing local authority.
2.8 It would never be appropriate to agree to a request for this Directorate to supervise the placement of a child looked after by another local authority and placed in secure accommodation and/or subject to Section 53 of the Children and Young Person Act 1933.
2.9 Where it is agreed at a Planning Meeting, that this Directorate should supervise a placement on behalf of the placing local authority, the case should be allocated to a Social Worker. The local authority concerned should also be asked to supply sufficient additional information to enable the Social Worker to competently supervise the placement on their behalf. (See paragraph 2.10) Agreement to supervise the placement should be detailed in writing and sent by the Relevant Head of Service to the placing local authority.
2.10

In particular, the placing local authority should forward to this Directorate a completed set of Looking After Children Materials, which should be MOSAIC compliant and may be forwarded electronically:

  1. Child Care Plan - Looked After Child;
  2. Review of Arrangements (most recent one - if applicable);
  3. Assessment and Progress Records (most recent one - if applicable).
2.11 Where a significant incident arises in the placement, whilst the child is placed in Lincolnshire, this Directorate will be expected to respond to the presenting needs. However, except in an absolute emergency (e.g. where it is not possible to contact the child's Social Worker or their Team Manager, or if out of hours the placing local authority's Emergency Duty Team), this Directorate should not take any significant action or remove the child, without consultation with the child's Social Worker or Team Manager within the placing local authority. At all times case management responsibility remains with the placing local authority. In the event that Lincolnshire Children's Services has to have an involvement in an emergency situation where the placing authority cannot be contacted any action should be on the basis of a Social Care Assessment having been completed by LCC. Lincolnshire Children's Services should never take action at the request of the placing authority's verbal authority solely, but must be certain that required actions are as a result of a written request, by fax or email and LCC's own Social Care Assessment. Lincolnshire Police will of course be able to work in partnership with the placing authority and Lincolnshire Children's Services to secure the immediate safety of a child.

LSCB documentation

2.12 The Social Worker from this Directorate should be invited to attend all Review Meetings for the child whilst the child is placed within Lincolnshire when they are supervising the placement.

End