What is private fostering?
Private fostering is not the same as fostering. Private fostering occurs when a parent (or someone with parental responsibility) makes an arrangement for their child or children to be cared for by someone else. The person looking after their child or children is known as the private foster carer.
A private fostering arrangement occurs when:
- a child (someone younger than 16 years or 18 years in the case of a child with disabilities) is planned to be cared for, or has already been cared for, by someone else for 28 consecutive days or more
- the person who will care for them – known as a private foster carer – is not a close family member*, for example a parent, grandparent, brother, sister, half-sibling, aunt, uncle, step-parent or an approved foster carer
*Close family relative does not include great-aunts or uncles, great grandparents or cousins.
The local authority (or, in our case, the Trust) is not involved in making the arrangements and the child or children are still the responsibility of their parents.