You may be able to get support and financial help if someone else’s child is living with you full time. You must tell us if you’re a parent and you’ve asked someone who isn’t a close relative to look after your child.

Kinship care

You’re known as a Kinship carer if you’re a grandparent, aunt, uncle, brother, sister or family friend looking after a child who can’t be cared for by their birth parents.

You must be approved as a foster carer if the local council has officially asked you to look after a child.

For more information visit our Kinship Care page.

Private fostering

You’re a private foster carer if both the following apply:

  • you’re looking after a child who’s under 16 (under 18 if they’re disabled) for more than 28 days in a row
  • you’re not a close relative, ie grandparent, brother or sister, uncle or aunt or step-parent

You must tell your local council about this arrangement.

For more information visit our Private fostering page.

Getting parental responsibility for the child

If you want to care for a child long term, you can get parental responsibility for the child by applying for a residence order or special guardianship order. For more information visit our Getting parental responsibility page.

You may also be able to adopt the child.

 

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