What fostering checks are done, and what would disqualify me as a foster carer? Becoming a foster carer involves a number of checks and we will look for information from many different sources and people who know you.
As part of the fostering assessment, we will carry out a number of fostering checks and references including:
- Criminal record checks
- Health checks
- Overseas and Military checks
- Child protection check
- House, garden and neighbourhood
- Household members
Criminal record checks
Police checks are required for every member of your household over the age of 16. We will also contact probation teams in the areas you have lived.
We will contact your GP to make sure that you are in good health to care for a child. We will ask you to attend a medical appointment with your own GP.
You will be asked to provide two personal references per person. The referees should be someone other than a relative who has known you for over two years and ideally live locally. The referees will be asked to complete a form and we will also visit them. We will also contact your employer for a reference.
Overseas & military checks
If you have lived overseas or served in the armed forces we will also contact the relevant authorities.
We will also check any history of contact with Social Services for Children in the areas you have lived. We may also contact your children’s schools to assess attendance and commitment to education.
If you have been involved in a previous significant relationship, we are under strict guidance to contact your ex-partner for domestic violence checks. We can only decide not to contact them if you can provide significant evidence that this would cause distress or threat to your family.
Home, garden & neighbourhood
Your house and local area will also be assessed for safety, facilities and access to schools. Garden ponds and water features must have a permanent child-safe plastic cover or grid, when fostering children under 8.
Your assessing social worker will hold individual discussions with every member of the household to discuss feelings and attitudes towards fostering.
Any pets in the home will also be assessed for safety, to ensure that there is no danger to the child. Any applicants who have dogs classified under the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991 will not be considered. Dangerous dogs include Pit Bull Terrier, Japanese Tosa, Dogo Argentino and Fila Braziliero.
The family income and out-goings will be discussed, to help you assess the finance involved
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