The following is an ‘annotation’ by one Avril Williams who has made 321 very investigative ‘Freedom of Information Requests’, using this remarkable WhatDoTheyKnow site.
None of the people I have asked are aware that an unknown number of Adoptive Parents receive Maintenance Allowances for their Adopted Children.
Unlike Foster Parents, Adoptive Parents DO have to undergo some kind of Means Test to decide how much money they should receive. HOWEVER –
First, whilst the late Department of Education and Skills, (I think its been replaced by a different Department), devised a Means Test questionnaire that asks questions similar to the questions that people would be asked when claiming State Benefits, it is up to individual Councils to decide whether or not to use it. (Refer on).
Second, Adopted Child Rates are linked to Foster Child Rates….NOT to State Benefit Child Rates. Foster Child Maintenance Allowances vary between Counties. (To date I’ve researched nearly 100 Counties’ rates). The National Fostering Network’s recommended Foster Child Maintenance Rates are 50% ABOVE the alleged cost of raising the same child in its own home.
However the amount of money, (earnings plus state benefit), that the State, (irrespective of party in Government), thinks that low income birth parents need to maintain their children is about 40% BELOW the alleged cost of raising a child in its own home.
Hence although Adoptive Parents, unlike most Foster Parents DON’T receive either extra money for holidays, birthdays, Christmas and a variety of other things, and although they don’t receive Fees, (alias rewards), the Child Maintenance Allowances paid are FAR HIGHER than State Benefit Child Allowances.
As already stated, Councils are free to choose whether or not to use the DES means Test. Denbighshire’s policy in 2010 was to award Adoptive Parents in the higher tax bracket 50% of its Fostering Allowances minus child benefit, and less affluent Adoptive Parents 100% of the Fostering Allowance, minus child benefit. (In August 2010 the higher tax band started at £43,876pa, i.e. at £843.77/week). Child Benefit is claimed separately.
Adoptive Parents also receive financial help to purchase requisite items in preparation for the child’s arrival.
Finally, whoever in the Department of Work and Pensions dealt with my 2010 ‘what do they know’ questions, thought that birth and adoptive parents were treated the same in respect of financial help with the cost of raising children.
- Couple who chose to foster instead of IVF treatment sing praises of caring for kids (dailyrecord.co.uk)
- The Entitled Foster Child Vs Incarcerated Adults (socialworkingal.net)
- Fostering in 2013: what’s changed and what the future looks like (calmyourbeans.wordpress.com)