Foster carer allowances and rewards

We offer generous and competitive payments and rewards for our foster carers. Payments vary depending on the type of foster care and age of the child/children, and are paid fortnightly, on Wednesdays.

Weekly payments for our mainstream foster carers have two parts:

  • Child allowance, to cover living costs, which varies depending on the age of the child.
  • A foster carers fee, which is for your time and skill dedicated to foster caring.

We also pay an annual allowance for holidays, birthdays and religious festivals, based on the age of the child.

  0-4 5-10 11-15 16-17
Child weekly allowance £141 £156 £177 £207
Foster carers weekly fee £200 £200 £240 £240
Holiday allowance (annual) £352.50 £390 £442.50 £517.50
Birthday allowance (annual) £141 £156 £177 £207
Religious festival allowance (annual) £141 £156 £177 £207
Yearly total (per child) £18,366.50 £19,214 £22,480.50 £24,175.50

Example fostering scenarios and allowances

The annual fostering allowance that you receive will vary based on a number of factors, including the type of foster care you provide, the number or children you care for, their age, and the complexity of their needs.

Here are some examples of the typical annual allowance you could receive based on five different fostering scenarios:

If you foster… Typical annual allowance
Two children aged 5 and 8 £38,428
Two children aged 11 and 14 £44,961
Three children aged 11, 13 and 16 £69,136.50
Two children aged 6 and 12, both with complex needs £54,694.50
A parent (not looked after) and two children aged 1 and 4 (looked after) £89,461

Fee Plus payments

Fee Plus payments may be paid to those foster carers who look after children with significant additional needs, often associated with complex health and/or disability needs.

Fee plus is a payment foster carers may receive instead of the foster carer weekly fee, but in addition to their weekly child allowance payment.

There are 2 categories which makes foster carers eligible for Fee plus payments:

  • Category 1 foster carers will receive a Fee Plus payment of £345 per week
  • Category 2 foster carers will receive a Fee Plus payment of £400 per week

Parent and child fostering allowances

Parent and child foster carers provide a home for both the parent and their child. There are enhanced allowances to reflect the specialist skills needed by our foster carers.

  Parent not looked after. Child aged 0-4yrs is looked after. Parent aged 17 and looked after. Child aged 0-4 not looked after. Both parent aged 16+ and child aged 0-4 are looked after. Neither parent nor child are looked after. Short breaks or Staying Put plans.
Weekly Child Allowance £500 £500 £500 for parent £500 for child: Total: £1,000 £500
Foster carers weekly fee for parent and/or child looked after £141 for child £207 for parent £207 for parent £141 for child Total: £348 N/A
Weekly payment for parent not looked after £207 N/A N/A £207
Weekly payment for child not looked after N/A £141 N/A £141
Weekly payments £848 £848 £1,348 £848
Annual payment for holiday, birthday and religious festivals £634.50 £931.50 £1,566 N/A
Annual payments £44,730.50 £45,027.50 £71,622 £44,096


Sibling group placements

When a sibling group of three or more children are matched and placed at the same time, foster carers will receive an additional incentive one off payment of £1000, after the children have been successfully fostered for two months.

Service awards

Our non-connected foster carers will receive a £1,000 post approval introduction payment, after successfully fostering a child with Lancashire County Council for two months.

We have also introduced the following long service award payments for foster carers who have fostered with Lancashire County Council for:

  • 5 years - £500
  • 10 years - £1000
  • 15 years - £1500
  • 20 + years at increments of 5 years - £2000
  • Recommend a friend to fostering - £1,500 per household (Once they successfully have fostered a child for 2 months)

Opportunities to contribute to the service

All of our foster carers have the opportunity to contribute to the service and take on voluntary roles to develop themselves and others. For example, attending a marketing event or contributing a case study for a marketing campaign, or being a buddy to another foster carer.

There are also some additional roles which our foster carers can receive extra payments for including becoming a trainer, mentor or sitting on an interview panel for recruiting new foster carers.

Transferring foster carers

We always welcome foster carers who would like to transfer from another authority or agency to Lancashire County Council.

If you have a Lancashire foster child in your home, we will match the payments in place. The matched payments will remain in place until the child leaves your home, is no longer fostered or turns 18 years old. The matched payments will only apply to the Lancashire child you had in your care at the point of transferring to us. Any placements that commence after transferring to us will be paid at the standard foster carer fee.

We're happy to answer any questions you have about money, employment or our payment system and allowances. Give us a call on 0300 123 6723 or complete our enquiry form to find out more.

Increased allowances

In recognition of the valuable work of foster carers and increasing costs, we raised our allowances on 1 April 2022. Newly approved foster carers can expect to receive between £341 and £447 per week, for each child they care for.

If you have considered fostering before but weren't sure you could afford it, please get in touch and find out if it could now be a viable option for you.

Enquire about fostering

If you'd prefer to speak to someone then give us a call on 0300 123 6723.