Legal and policy background

Legal & policy backgroundInformation on the legal and regulatory framework for fostering and provision of services to children in care.

Fostering Minimum Standards

This document contains the Fostering Services:National Minimum Standards 2011 applicable to fostering services. These standards form the basis of the new regulatory framework under the Care Standards Act 2000 (CSA) for the conduct of fostering services. They should be read in conjunction with the Fostering Services (England) Regulation 2011 and the Statutory Guidance for the Children Act 1989: Volume 4 (revised 2011).

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Independent Review Mechanism

The Independent Review Mechanism (IRM) is a review process which prospective or existing foster carers can use when they do not agree with the qualifying determination given to them by their fostering service provider.

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Special Guardianship

Special Guardianship Orders are intended to meet the needs of children who cannot live with their birth parents but for whom adoption is not appropriate. They are of particular relevance to foster carers offering a permanent home to a child where adoption is not a suitable plan, although they are now most widely used by family members who are caring in the long term for children to whom they are related

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The Children Act 1989 - implications for fostering

All child care law relating to children being accommodated by the local authority comes under the Children Act 1989.

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Summary of the Children Act 2004

This is a brief account of the key parts of the Act that specifically relate to the Change for Children programme in England.

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Changing the terms of a foster carer's approval

Concerns have been raised that terms of approval cannot be amended within 6 working days to allow a child to remain with a carer who they have been placed with outside the carer’s terms of approval. The Department has been asked for the policy reasoning behind this.

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Bedroom sharing in the foster home

A few people have raised with the Department issues around the fostering services national minimum standard on bedroom sharing (standard 10.6).  This note is intended to clarify the wording of the standard and how this was reached.

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The Fostering Services (England) Regulations 2011

Following extensive public consultation the Department has revised and modernised the statutory framework for fostering. This includes the fostering services regulations and related statutory guidance and national minimum standards.

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