Public children—private fostering
Produced in partnership with Maud Davis of TV Edwards LLP
Public children—private fostering

The following Family guidance note Produced in partnership with Maud Davis of TV Edwards LLP provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Public children—private fostering
  • Meaning of ‘privately fostered child’
  • Meaning of ‘relative’
  • Disqualification from privately fostering
  • Power to prohibit private fostering or impose a requirement
  • Local authority duties—general
  • Local authority duties—further provision
  • Statutory guidance

The statutory provision regarding privately fostered children is contained in the Part IX of the Children Act 1989 (ChA 1989). The English regulatory provision is contained in the Children (Private Arrangements for Fostering) Regulations 2005 (C(PAF)R 2005), SI 2005/1533 and the Welsh regulatory provision is contained in the Children (Private Arrangements for Fostering) (Wales) Regulations 2006 (C(PAF)(W)R 2006), SI 2006/940.

Meaning of ‘privately fostered child’

A privately fostered child is:

  1. a child under the age of 16 (under the age of 18 if the child is disabled)

  2. who is cared for by a person who is not a parent or relative of the child, and

  3. that person is not someone who has parental responsibility for the child, and

  4. the private foster carer looks after the child in their own home

However, a child is not privately fostered if the care and accommodation has been provided for less than 28 days and that person does not intend to care for the child for any longer period.

Nor is a child privately fostered if the child is cared for in premises where the child’s parent, a relative who has assumed responsibility for the child’s care, or someone who is not a parent but has parental responsibility, is also living for the time being. A child placed for adoption by an adoption agency is