Fostering fees and allowances
Foster care is a great direction to take in your life. Our foster parents see it as a rewarding role that allows them to help young people develop and grow while earning a generous allowance.
This page is designed to help you better understand, how much do you’ll receive for fostering a child and whether foster care is a financially viable option for you and the factors that need to be considered before taking the next step on your journey to becoming a foster carer.
We will cover:
- How Much Do Foster Parents Get Paid (Fostering Pay & Allowances)
- Tax Reliefs & Exemptions
- Things To Consider Before Fostering
How Much Do Foster Parents Get Paid (Fostering Pay & Allowances)
At Fostering People, we’re proud to be local. However, working in local communities doesn’t just mean that we can offer great support. It means we can offer our foster carers better financial allowances too.
That’s because we don’t have to spend money supporting different offices. As a result, our carers benefit from generous fostering fees that enable them to commit their full time and attention to fostering.
You’ll begin receiving your fostering allowance as soon as a child is placed in your care. The amount you’ll receive varies from placement to placement but will cover expenses including maintenance, clothing, pocket money, leisure activities, travel and birthday expenses. It also includes the usual school expenditure, such as day visits and uniforms.
Our foster carers currently receive a foster care allowance of between £390 and £700, depending on the age of the child and the type of placement. On average our foster carers receive over £420 per week per child, for a child over the age of 10.
How much you can earn through fostering can depend upon where you live in the UK and the type of foster placement. To learn how much you could earn through fostering, we recommend giving us a call on 0800 077 8159.
Tax Reliefs & Exemptions
Thanks to generous tax relief from HM Revenue & Customs, foster carers pay very little (if any) tax. By joining Fostering People, you will gain free membership to Foster Talk and will be able to access their fostering tax advice and support services.
HMRC provides a fixed tax exemption of up to £10,000 per year (or less if you foster for a shorter period). This tax exemption is shared equally between all foster carers in the same household. This tax exemption means you won’t pay tax on the first £10,000 you earn from fostering.
You will also benefit from a weekly tax relief while you have a child placed in your card. This tax relief is on top of the £10,000 tax exemption meaning you won’t have to pay tax on some of your earnings over £10,000.
The weekly amount of tax relief is dependent on the age of the foster child in your care:
For each child under the age of 11 in your care, you will benefit from a tax relief of £200 each week.
For each child aged 11 or over in your care, you will benefit from a tax relief of £250 each week.
Susan fosters full time, she fosters a 15-year-old boy on a long term so has cared for him for a full tax year.
|Tax relief =||£10,000|
|Tax Exemption – 52 weeks at £250 =||£13,000|
|Total Tax Threshold =||£23,000|
|Susan’s Total Fostering Allowance =||£21,000|
|How Much Income Susan Pays Tax On =||£0|
Susan receives a fostering allowance of £21,000 and will pay no tax.
Karen fosters a 12-year-old girl for a full year but then has a 6-year-old placed with her for 14 weeks.
|Tax Relief =||£10,000|
|Tax Exemption – 52 weeks at £250 =||£13,000|
|Tax Exemption – 14 weeks at £200 =||£2,800|
|Total Tax Threshold =||£25,800|
|Karen’s Total Fostering Allowance =||£28,000|
|How Much Income Karen Pays Tax On =||£2,200|
Karen receives a fostering allowance of £28,000. She will need to pay tax on £2,200 of her income.
Tax depends on your personal circumstances and other sources of income, but with expert tax advice from Foster Talk this will be simple for you. Foster Talk’s tax accountants can even manage your tax return on request for a small administration fee.
Things To Consider Before Fostering
Before taking the big step of becoming a foster carer, we recommend you take every aspect of your life and your family’s lives into consideration. Fostering is a big commitment that can impact your lives in unexpected and wonderful ways. Below we have listed some of the most common questions we get asked to help you decide if fostering is right for you.
Will I be paid in between fostering placements?
No, we don’t pay a retainer fee in between fostering placements.
We aim to leave as little or as much time in between placements as you wish. If you’d like continuous fostering placements, you may want to consider caring for teenagers as well as younger children.
Can I still go out to work if I become a foster carer?
Yes, you can, although many foster carers prefer not to. We offer generous allowances so that the main foster carer doesn’t have to work. This means you can be constantly available for the child in your care, and able to attend meetings and continue training.
Other carers prefer to work part-time and make themselves available at short notice, such as if their child falls ill at school. We have carers who continue to work and others who’d rather stay at home. We’ll look at this with you and consider your individual circumstances.
Will fostering affect my State Pension?
No, as a foster care, you’ll be eligible for class 2 and class 4 National Insurance credits, which counts towards your State Pension.