Kinship care is when a person is caring for a relative’s child, usually to avoid that child being placed in foster care.
Many grandparents, relatives and friends are asked by social services to care for a child rather than be placed with foster carers. Many such children have been physically or emotionally abused.
What are grandparent’s rights if they find themselves in this situation?
If the Local Authority were actively involved in placing your grandchild with you (they said that the child would be placed in care if they couldn’t live with you) then it may be that the Local Authority is responsible for the placement under s.20 of the Children Act 1989.
If this applies to you then you may be entitled to receive a fostering allowance to help you financially care for your grandchild.
How does a grandparent obtain a fostering allowance?
It is our experience that the Local Authority does not automatically pay a fostering allowance if the placement is under s.20 of the Children Act. It can take a while for the Local Authority to agree that the placement is a s.20 placement.
The starting point is to raise this with the Social Worker as soon as the child is placed in your care. If the Local Authority still deny that they were involved with the placement then you should look at instructing solicitors.
How much does it cost?
Depending on your income will depend on whether you qualify for legal aid. If you do qualify then your costs will be covered. If you do not qualify then we suggest you discuss costs and a possible payment plan with your solicitor.
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