How much does a foster carer get paid? Read on to find the answer to this commonly asked question, featuring exact figures for salaries and tax allowance.
Fostering a child can be a truly rewarding experience, enabling you to change a child or young person’s life for the better. But of course, choosing whether to foster is an important decision – and one of the most common questions that gets asked is, how much do foster parents get paid?
At Capstone, our foster carers can earn from £20,400 to upwards of £41,600 per year.
Whilst we appreciate that conversations about foster care allowance can be uncomfortable, we also want to remove the stigma around fostering salaries. After all, whilst fostering is a vocation, it is also a career. So, read on to learn all about fostering allowances and whether fostering is the right choice for your family.
So, how much do you get paid for fostering? Fostering a vulnerable child who desperately needs your help not only has emotional rewards but offers financial benefits too. As a foster carer, much of your time will be dedicated to supporting and creating a safe environment for your foster child – which is why fostering allowance is provided to support you and your lifestyle, whether you’re a long or short-term carer.
How much foster carers are paid per week depends on a number of factors. These factors can include:
Here at Capstone Foster Care, as an Employee Ownership Trust, we are able to offer competitive rates for our fostering arrangements. Here is a financial breakdown of some of our fostering placements:
Total allowances for most of our standard arrangements - including respite payments - is in excess of £400 per week, which would work out to be around £1,700 a month or £20,400 a year. We also provide an annual £200 gift for ongoing carers at the re-approval stage and 14 nights short stay support.
Fostering allowance for parent and child placements starts from £800 per week, to comfortably support you and the parent and baby in your care. At Capstone Foster Care, we’ve seen an increase in demand for mother and baby fostering arrangements, as more parents seek additional support and guidance when raising their newborn. Though usually short-term, these placements are also incredibly rewarding for our foster carers.
The demand for support for foster children with complex requirements is growing. As a result, we have developed a long-standing, highly-successful programme called MATTS. MATTS provides carers with clinical support, additional training and resources to enable them to accommodate specialist therapeutic placements. Fostering allowances for children and carers supported by MATTS are between £525 and £600 per week. So, if you look after a child under this arrangement for a whole year, your total income will be over £26,780 per child (and £23,000 of this will be tax-free). All necessary training for therapeutic foster care is provided by our team at Capstone, meaning the majority of our carers are eligible to provide care under our MATTS service.
Want to learn about different foster care arrangements? Discover the various types of foster care placements available at Capstone, or contact a member of our team to learn more about each offer and their unique fostering allowance.
The weekly allowance paid to carers is made up of two parts:
There are standards set by the government for independent agencies, such as Capstone Foster Care, to use as a guideline when compensating their foster carers. Click here to learn more.
Yes - foster carers do pay income tax. However, as well as receiving a competitive allowance, foster carers benefit from a specialist tax allowance called Qualifying Care Relief. Carers who qualify for care relief in the 2023 to 2024 tax year are entitled to:
Foster carers who support children under the age of 11 will receive an additional £375 of tax relief per week, per child. Foster carers supporting children and adults aged 11 or over will receive £450 of tax relief per week, per child.
Once you are approved as a foster parent and registered with the HMRC, you will be classed as self-employed. In turn, you will need to keep a record of the ages of the children in your care and the dates/duration of when you foster for your annual tax return form.
Yes, you are still eligible to receive benefits as a foster parent. However, some of the benefits you receive could change once you become a foster carer. Benefits you could be entitled to include:
For more information on the benefits, you could be entitled to read our guide on fostering and benefits.
If your fostering income falls within your qualifying care relief, you do not have to pay National Insurance. However, many foster carers voluntarily pay National Insurance to secure state benefits.
Yes, you can foster if you have experienced financial struggles in the past. However, you will need to provide evidence to show that you’re in a financially secure position now, in order to prove you can provide a stable home for a child.
Begin by filling out the enquiry form below. Alternatively, if you want to learn more about fostering pay or need additional advice on how much foster parents get paid, contact us on 0800 012 4004.
If you’ve got any questions or would like to find out more about fostering with Capstone, fill out the form below.
An experienced fostering advisor from your local area will then be in touch.