Our foster care allowances take into account the demands of foster care and the significance of the role you play in a child or young person’s life. They’re designed to help you cover the cost of looking after the foster child in placement.
You’re not just entitled to competitive allowances and fostering fees. You’ll also be entitled to other benefits including tax relief and may continue to receive any benefits you may already be entitled to whilst you have a fostering placement.
In addition, foster carers receive a range of benefits, such as access to our exclusive rewards platform, where there are hundreds of fantastic discounts on family experiences and shops across the UK.
How much will I receive?
You start to receive your fostering allowance as soon as a child or young person is in your care.
On average, our foster parents receive approx £400 per child, per week.
However, the amount of foster care pay that you receive varies from region to region and the type of fostering. We understand that some children and young people have more challenging needs and requirements than others, and that sometimes you’ll need an extra helping hand. Factors such as this, along with the age of the child you foster can all affect the allowances and fostering payments you’ll receive.
What is the fostering allowance used for?
We don’t advise you how to spend your fostering allowance; this is for you to decide based on the needs the child and your family. We provide you with a fostering allowance that takes into account the costs of living with a foster child. This can include food, clothing, pocket money, household bills, transport, activities and everyday living.
"We've been made to feel very welcome and part of the team, not just a resource. That's why we decided to foster with Foster Care Associates."
Tax information for foster parents
When you foster with us, you’ll be classed as self-employed. This means you’ll be entitled to tax relief on your fostering income and each year you’ll need to file a tax return.
You are entitled to qualifying care relief which means:
- Part one - You can earn £10,000 from fostering before you have to pay tax.
- Part two - a weekly tax relief amount for each child in your care.
- £200 for children under 11.
- £250 for children aged 11 or over.
Your National Insurance contribution and state pension
As a self employed foster parent you will also need to register for Class 2 National Insurance contributions. If as a foster parent your taxable income from fostering is less than the foster carer tax allowance so you are not paying income tax, you don’t have to pay National Insurance either. However, you may decide to make voluntary Class 2 National Insurance contributions. This would enable your entitlement to Basic State Pension, Bereavement Benefits, Maternity Allowance and contributory Employment and Support allowance.
Can I work while I’m a foster parent?
Ideally we ask for at least one foster parent to be available for fostering on a full-time basis, so that we can ensure that the child or young person in your care is being looked after in the best way possible. As a foster parent, you have responsibility for day-to-day tasks; the school run, be available during school holidays, attend medical appointments on behalf or with your foster child, attend training, review meetings. Should you have a problem on an odd occasion, your supervising social worker can help you make alternative arrangements.
In some cases it is still possible for you to continue working on a part-time or flexible basis depending on your individual circumstances. To find out more, give us a call on 0800 023 4561.
Do foster parents receive child benefits?
You can continue to claim child benefit for your own children and other children that live with you, however you can’t claim for children that you are fostering. As you are already receiving an allowance for each foster child or young person in your care.
Will I be paid in between fostering referrals?
We do not continue to pay fostering allowances in between foster referrals, however we always aim for you to have little time without a child or young person, should this be your wish.
Speak to our team
Whether you’re ready to start your journey or just want to chat to an expert, where here to talk.