how much do you get for fostering a child

Fostering Allowances

At Foster Care Associates Scotland we believe you deserve to be rewarded for your hard work.

That’s why we offer all our foster carers a generous package of financial support. Our fostering allowances and payments take into account the demands of fostering and the importance of your role in a child or young person’s life. Better still, they begin from the moment a child or young person is placed in your care.

How much allowance/payment
will I receive?

The weekly fee amount will vary depending on the type of placement, the age of the child or if the child in your care has challenging needs or specialist requirements, you may be eligible for an enhanced fostering fee. Our fostering allowance is on average £481 per child per week.

In addition, you will also receive a range of benefits, such as access to our exclusive rewards platform, where there are hundreds of fantastic discounts on shops across the UK and family experiences.  There is also the opportunity to attend and attend local and national events and activities for the whole fostering family.

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Finance calculator

To learn how much you could earn through fostering, try our Financial calculator.

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What can the foster care allowance and payments be used for?

Your fostering allowance takes into account the costs of living with a foster child or young person and includes:



Basic travel

Household bills

Everyday living

Additional fostering payments and rewards 

At FCA Scotland, our foster carers go above and beyond for children and young people every day and we believe we should do the same for them. That’s why along with a generous fostering allowance is on average £481 per child per week, our foster carers will also receive:

  • A summer and winter £250 bonus payment each year
  • Up to 14 nights paid respite
  • A special gift or experience for each fostering milestone you hit
  • Annual events to recognise and support your role as a carer
  • An additional appreciation bonus each year which rises in line with length of service with us

Discover how fostering will affect your finances

Don’t let finances be the barrier to starting your fostering journey, discover our essential guide to allowances, tax, National Insurance and claiming benefits whilst fostering.

Download Guide

foster carers talking about tax allowance

Will I pay tax on my allowances?

Many people may find it daunting to understand how fostering affects their tax and National Insurance contributions. As a foster carer you’ll be classed as self-employed. This means you’ll be entitled to tax relief on your fostering income and each year you need to file a tax return.

You are entitled to qualifying care relief, which is made up of two parts:

  • Part one - You can earn £18,140 from fostering before you have to pay tax.
  • Part two - a weekly tax relief amount for each child in your care
    • £375 for children under 11
    • £450 for children aged 11 or over

These guides from HMRC will help you understand more about foster carers tax allowance:

Tax for foster carers Qualifying care relief

Benefits and tax credits

Foster carers are entitled to claim means tested benefits as your fostering allowance isn’t classed as income when calculating these benefits. Means tested benefits are called non-contributory benefits these include:

  • Child Tax Credit

  • Jobseeker's Allowance (income based)

  • Housing and Council Tax Benefit

  • Carers Allowance (fostering income is disregarded)

  • Income Support

  • Working Tax Credit

Whether you’re eligible for benefits will depend on your personal circumstances. You’ll still be able to claim Child Tax Credit for your own children, but not for the children you foster.

There are also some other non-contributory benefits that are not means-tested, which include:

  • Disability Living Allowance (DLA)

  • Personal Independence Payment

  • Attendance Allowance

  • Universal Credits

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foster children smiling

Fostering finance calculator

The amount you receive in foster care payments varies from placement to placement. We understand that some children have more challenging needs and requirements than others, and that sometimes you’ll need a helping hand. Factors such as this, along with the age of the child being placed with you and the type of placement, can all affect the allowances and fostering payments you’ll receive.

Find out what payments you could receive

Frequently asked questions

Do I get any breaks or holidays while fostering?

We do offer respite your supervising social worker can speak to you about what it entails.

What kind of support will I receive?

We wouldn’t expect anyone to foster without the right support, so when you foster with FCA Scotland you are not alone.

Become a foster carer with us and you have access to:

  • Social Work Support– you will have a dedicated supervising social worker who is your main point of contact and will organise monthly meetings and support for you whenever you need it
  • 24 / 7 support
  • Training and development - We will prepare you to foster and keep developing your skills with an ongoing training programme featuring both face to face and online courses through our Learnative portal.
  • Events and activities – we host a range of events and activities for all the family to enjoy.
  • Online portal – Join our online community with our Carer Portal The Exchange just for FCA Scotland foster carers. It gives you free and instant access to information and advice right when you need it – day or night, 365 days a year. Plus access to a range of discounts to some major retailers and online stores.
  • Fostering Network membership - useful and practical benefits, including insurance, legal protection, medical and stress advice helplines, as well as a foster care magazine.

What training will I receive as a foster carer?

We pride ourselves on being a learning organisation and are proactive in helping both our foster carers and employees to develop their skills, knowledge and experience.

We are committed to providing high quality training that is accessible and relevant to all of our foster carers.

Can I still work and be a foster carer?

In some cases it is still possible for you to continue working on a part-time or flexible basis depending on your individual circumstances.

Ideally we ask for at least one foster carer to be available for fostering on a full-time basis, so that we can ensure that the child or young person in your care is being looked after in the best way possible. As a foster carer, you have responsibility for day-to-day tasks; the school run, be available during school holidays, attend medical appointments on behalf or with your child, attend training, review meetings.  Should you have a problem on an odd occasion, your supervising social worker can help you make alternative arrangements.

More FAQs

Got some more questions?
Find out the answers here.

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