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3.2.7 Funding of Kinship Care Placements

NOTE

From April 2014, Residence Orders and Contact Orders were replaced by Child Arrangements Orders. Prior to April 2014, a Residence Order was a Court Order made under section 8 of the Children Act 1989, settling the arrangements as to the person with whom a child was to live.


Contents

  1. Kinship Placements made by Parents and Supported by Payments from Section 17
  2. On-off Payments under Section 17
  3. Provision of Funding for Child Maintenance Costs for a Time Limited Period
  4. Kinship Care Placements where the Child is Subject to an Interim or Full Residence Order or Special Guardianship Order
  5. Kinship Care Placements in Respect of Looked After Children


1. Kinship Placements made by Parents and Supported by Payments from Section 17

The policy of Lincolnshire County Council is to promote the upbringing of children in need by their families. Parents should be encouraged to contribute to their child's care and should transfer the Child Benefit Allowance to their child's carer.

If a child's needs can be met with a family member or friend the Directorate may in exceptional circumstances, and with the agreement of the parents, provide financial support to the placement under Section 17 (CA 1989) rather than accommodate the child under Section 20 so long as this is consistent with the child's welfare. Under these circumstances, financial support under Section 17 could range from a one off payment to the provision of an agreed level of financial support for a limited period of time. The financial means of the carer will be taken into account including assisting them in ensuring they are receiving any welfare benefits which they are entitled to. Where section 17 financial support is provided it will be subject to continuing review to ensure that the care arrangements continue to meet the needs of the child.

In the process of making decision about the funding of placements under Section 17 the Directorate will have regard to the criteria set out in Financial Assistance Procedure.


2. On-off Payments under Section 17

One-off payments made in respect of costs arising during the course of a child's private kinship placement will be made in accordance with the criteria outlined in Financial Assistance Procedure.


3. Provision of Funding for Child Maintenance Costs for a Time Limited Period

Payment for the child maintenance costs may be made, at the Directorate's discretion, under Section 17, for a time limited period, in exceptional circumstances, where an assessment has concluded that:

  • Financial assistance is required to meet the child or young person's needs and to promote and safeguard his/her welfare;

    and
  • The local authority would have to accommodate the child/ young person under Section 20 of the Children Act if no financial assistance was provided and there is clear evidence that the child's interests and welfare are best promoted for the time limited period proposed in the assessment of their needs without the provision of accommodation under this Section;

    and
  • A financial assessment indicates that no person(s) with parental authority is able to fund the placement and the placement cannot be funded by recourse to the national welfare benefits system.

The level of any allowance payable will be based upon Income Support rates for the child minus any relevant deductions.


4. Kinship Care Placements where the Child is Subject to an Interim or Full Residence Order or Special Guardianship Order

Any payments made will be in accordance with Directorate policy in relation to the payment of these allowances. (See Residence Order/Child Arrangements Order Procedure and Special Guardianship Order Procedure and Residence Order/Child Arrangements Order Allowances - Children's Financial Review Procedure and Special Guardianship Payment Review Procedure).


5. Kinship Care Placements in Respect of Looked After Children

Kinship placements of Looked After Children will be funded in accordance with Directorate policy for the payment of fostering allowances. Under current policy, kinship foster carers are paid a level of allowance in line with the NFCA recommended rate of allowance for foster carers. Payments should be made as soon as the child is placed and financed from the FAST team budget. If and when the carers are approved as family and friends foster carers payments should be made through the fostering team.

End