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Contracts For Fostering or Adopting Children

By: Garry Crystal - Updated: 15 Jan 2017 | comments*Discuss
 
Adoption Adopt Foster Care Children

The contracts involved when fostering or adopting children will naturally include a number or rigid terms and conditions.

Regardless of whether the process involves fostering or adoption the contracts involved will lay out exactly the obligations, expectations and requirements of the intended carers.

Pre Fostering and Adoption Checks

Those who are considering fostering or adopting children will no doubt be aware of the rigorous checks they will be required to go through.

These checks will include:

  • Checks with the Criminal Records Bureau.
  • Health and education department checks.
  • Police checks.
  • Checks with the NSPCC.
  • Personal references from friends and families of the applicants.
  • Assessments on the applicants from social workers including many personal interviews.
The number of checks, interviews, and assessments can seem endless and may take many months, if not longer. However they are implemented to ensure the safety of the child that is to be fostered or adopted. If any of these checks do turn out to be unacceptable then it can mean that the placement will not go ahead. Any provisional contracts will be terminated or suspended until further enquiries are made.

Fostering Contracts

There are a great number of fostering contracts available to successful applicants. These can include long and short term fostering, contract fostering for children with special needs, and remand fostering for children that have been charged with an offence. There is also springboard fostering that involves looking after children with challenging behavioural patterns who need extra attention.

Fostering applicants should make it known which kind of fostering contract they are interested in. This will then be included in their fostering contracts, and the terms and conditions of the contract will apply to this type of fostering.

Other Fostering Contract Terms and Conditions

Also included in fostering contracts will be a number of terms and conditions relating to the care of the child that is to be fostered. These conditions will include the health and safety aspects that the foster carer must abide by in relation to the child. The contract will also state the obligations of the foster carer towards the child in respect of the child’s well being.

Fostering Payment Terms

Foster parents are paid an allowance to look after children and this will also be noted in the contract. These payments will be dependant on the type of foster contract and the frequency of payment will also be noted. The date the foster placement will begin will also be noted in the contract as well as the end date and any review dates.

Adoption Contracts

Fostering and adoption contracts will differ but they will still contain a number of common conditions such as adoption allowances and payments. Where adoption agencies are concerned it is a good idea to take home and thoroughly read through the agency’s adoption contract. This will make the intended adoptive parents fully aware of the expectations, requirements and obligations of both parties.

Adoption Type Contract Terms

There are many different types of adoption and each contract will differ depending on the adoption type. Terms can include open adoption, which allows for relationships to continue between the adopted child and the birth family after the child has been adopted. There will also be different conditions for children that have been adopted from foreign counties and these will usually come under the heading of international adoptions.

The Adoption Order

The adoption order is an official document that is granted from the High Court, the magistrate’s court or the child’s local county court. The adoption order is the contract needed to formally make an adoption legal. This is a very important document and without it an adoption will not be viewed as legal in the eyes of the law.

Contracts involving fostering or adopting children are, like any other contract, legally binding. Social workers will carry out reviews of child placements and the frequency of these reviews will be noted in the fostering and adoption contracts. If the care of a child is in doubt during any placement then the contract can be terminated immediately without notice.

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