Staying put—arrangements for care leavers to remain in foster placements
Produced in partnership with Ruth Cabeza of Field Court Chambers
Staying put—arrangements for care leavers to remain in foster placements

The following Local Government guidance note Produced in partnership with Ruth Cabeza of Field Court Chambers provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Staying put—arrangements for care leavers to remain in foster placements
  • What is the purpose of a staying put arrangement?
  • Who is eligible?
  • Local authority duties
  • Minimum standards
  • Implications of staying put arrangements for a former foster carer
  • Staying put agreements

What is the purpose of a staying put arrangement?

The 'staying put’ arrangements contained in section 23CZA of the Children Act 1989 (ChA 1989) provide a statutory framework to facilitate a young person continuing to live with their foster family for a period of up to three years following their 18th birthday. The intention of the staying put arrangement is to enable children leaving care to have the same sort of support and security that their peers will have.

The staying put arrangements reflect the fact that although an 18-year-old is legally an adult, the reality for many young people is that they lack the financial independence and emotional maturity to leave home on their 18th birthday and forge an independent life. Many young adults require the emotional, practical and financial support of their families as they transition from young adult to independent adult.

For former foster children, the familial relationship is based in bonds of love and commerce and the staying put arrangements recognise and reflect this in relation to:

  1. financial support from the local authority

  2. a degree of financial self-responsibility from the young person

  3. continued monitoring and support by the local authority of the placement to ensure it continues to meet the young person’s needs

It is essential to grasp at the outset that, although on the surface