Fostering is a career that can suit people of all ages (as long as you’re over the age of 21) and has no upper age limit providing you’re physically and mentally able to care for the child. If you’re nearing or are at retirement age and are thinking of fostering, you may have some questions about your pension. Or, you might just want to know if you’re able to contribute to your pension while you’re fostering. Our helpful guide will break down how pensions work for foster carers.
Working as a foster carer won’t affect your State Pension due to government changes to the scheme which were established in 2016. Your State Pension entitlement is now dependent on your National Insurance contribution. As a foster carer, you’ll earn Class 2 or Class 4 National Insurance Credits, which count towards the basic and additional State Pension. The credits are valid for each week that you are approved as a foster carer. This means the work you do as a foster carer counts towards your National Insurance contribution. To claim your National Insurance credits you’ll need to complete a CF411A form and submit it alongside evidence that you are a foster carer to HMRC annually.
You can absolutely claim a pension if you’re a foster parent and are retired or semi-retired. In the UK, a default or forced retirement age no longer exists, this means you can continue working and claim your pension. For a state pension, you can foster and claim your pension as long as you’ve reached the state pension age of 66 years old. For a private pension, you can continue to foster and receive your pension on the condition you’ve reached the age you’ve agreed with your provider.
As a foster parent, you’ll also be entitled to a Fostering Allowance to enable you to pay for the care of the child as well as a reward for all your hard work. As an independent fostering agency, Capstone is able to provide competitive fostering rates for the care that you provide to the child.
Still have questions? Our team have created a collection of resources to help you with all aspects fostering finances - from pay to pensions. Explore the side menu to read our detailed guides on all things fostering finance.
As long as you are fit and well and able to care for your foster child, fostering is a career suitable for any age. Here at Capstone Foster Care, the average age of our foster parents is 53 and we have many foster parents who are older than retirement age.
You may find that as you reach retirement age, you feel like you have the maturity and life experience to become a positive role model for a foster child and be able to help teach them important life skills. Or, you may have experience in a career that has provided you with transferable skills to make you well equipped to foster if you choose to do so during your retirement.
If you’re considering becoming a foster parent and want to learn more, read our guides about who can foster. Visit our knowledge centre for a wealth of information, whether you’re curious about how much foster carers get paid or want to know how to prepare your home for a foster child. Alternatively, you can get in touch with one of the helpful team here at Capstone for advice and guidance.
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.