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Foster Carer allowances

We're a 100% not-for-profit organisation committed to keeping children and young people in local care, near to their birth families, friends and schools.

The financial support we provide is made up of 2 parts:

  • A weekly allowance based on the age of the child.
  • A weekly fee based on your skill level.

Your skill level will be discussed with you at the home visit stage. It ranges from Level 1 to Level 4, with Level 4 being the highest.

The basic weekly allowance for 2020-2021, paid per child per week, is:

  • Child aged 0-4 years: £135
  • Child aged 5-10 years: £149
  • Child aged 11-15 years: £170
  • Child aged 16 or over: £198

The basic weekly fee for 2020-2021, paid per child per week, is:

  • Level 1: no fee
  • Level 2: £75
  • Level 3: £140
  • Level 4: £280

Additional allowances

You'll also receive the following additional allowances for each fostered child or young person in your care:

  • Birthday allowance - equivalent to 1 week's basic weekly allowance.
  • Festival allowance - equivalent to 1 week's basic weekly allowance.
  • Holiday allowance - 1 per year, equivalent to 2 weeks' basic weekly allowance.

How are foster carer allowances paid?

Basic allowances are paid fortnightly through BACS (bank transfer).  

Festival, birthday and holiday allowances are paid at the relevant times on top of basic weekly allowance payments.

Tax and National Insurance for foster carers

Most foster carers do not pay tax on their fostering income due to the Qualifying Care Relief scheme.

Foster carers are self-employed and have to submit a tax return at the end of the financial year. An end of year income statement is provided by the council. This can be done through the online Self Assessment tax return at no cost.

Foster carers qualify for Class 2 National Insurance Contributions at £2.95 per week. This provides access to state maternity benefits, a state retirement pension and state bereavement benefits.

Foster carers can apply for Class 3 National Insurance Credits at the end of the tax year. This counts towards state retirement pension only.

Foster Carers may qualify for Working Tax Credits (dependant on income) and fostering income is disregarded when claiming some benefits.

HM Revenue and Customs offer an e-learning course on tax and National Insurance for foster carers:


0300 303 1000

Phone: Monday-Friday 9am-5pm.

Find the Fostering Team on a map

Fostering Team
Fashion Corner
57-59 Drake Street
Rochdale OL16 1PA

Make a fostering enquiry