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Adoption

Financial support

Financial assistance is an important element of adoption support and financial barriers should not impede an adoption going ahead which is otherwise recognised as in the best interests of the child.

There are a number of arrangements which we can make to support an adoptive placement.

1. Adoption allowances - In certain circumstances we are able to pay an adoption allowance if the child meets certain criteria.  Normally the decision to pay an adoption allowance is based on the childs needs and would be identified prior to matching.  When the Adoption Panel considers a match with prospective adopters they will also make a recommendation in relation to awarding an adoption allowance in conjunction with an assessment of the prospective adopters' financial circumstances.

Adoption allowances cannot exceed the amount of the fostering allowance and cannot include an element of remuneration.  Adoption allowances are reviewed annually.

2. Settlement grant - On some occasions a settlement grant may be payable, generally where no other allowance is payable and there may be considerable outlay to meet the needs of the child.

3. Legal fees - We are able to assist in the payment of legal fees in cases where the adoption is contested.  This decision is made by the Agency Decision Maker at the point of approving the match.

4. Benefit and tax credit system - Once a child is adopted financial support paid to adoptive families under the Adoption Allowances Regulations is exempt from tax and will be disregarded for the purposes of determining eligibility for tax credits.  Adoptive parents can make application for child benefit and other related benefits.  Further information can be accessed on their website at www.dwp.gov.uk

5. Statutory adoption leave and pay - Adoptive parents are entitled to statutory adoption leave and pay.  The adoption leave scheme is broadly similar to maternity leave and the details of the scheme can be accessed from your employer.