Foster Children (Scotland) Act 1984



Foster Children(Scotland) Act 1984

1984 CHAPTER 56

An Act to consolidate certain enactments relating to foster children as they have effect in Scotland.

[31st October 1984]

Be it enacted by the Queen's most Excellent Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and Commons, in this present Parliament assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows:—

Foster children for the purposes of the Act

Foster children for the purposes of the Act

S-1 Foster children.

1 Foster children.

1. Subject to section 2, a child is a foster child for the purposes of this Act if he is—

a ) below the upper limit of the compulsory school age and
b ) his care is undertaken for a period of more than 6 days by a person who is not a relative or guardian of his

The period of 6 days begins with the day on which the child is received into the care of that person.

S-2 Exceptions to section 1.

2 Exceptions to section 1.

(1) A child is not a foster child while he is in the care of a local authority or a voluntary organisation or is boarded out by an education authority.

(2) A child is not a foster child while he is in the care of any person—

(a ) in premises in which any parent, adult relative or guardian of his is for the time being residing;

(b ) in any residential establishment;

(c ) in any school within the meaning of the Education (Scotland) Act 1980 ;

(d ) in any hospital or in any nursing home registered or exempted from registration under the Nursing Homes Registration (Scotland) Act 1938 ;

(e ) in any home or institution not specified in this section but maintained by a public or local authority; or

(f ) who undertakes his care for a period not exceeding one month beginning with the day the child is received into that care, unless—

(i) the person during the year immediately preceding the date of receiving into care has had the care of one or more foster children for periods which in the aggregate exceed 3 months, or

(ii) the number of continuous periods which exceed 6 days beginning on the day of receiving into care, throughout which the particular child or any child was in the care of that person in that period of one year, exceeds 3.

(3) A child is not a foster child while he is in the care of any person in compliance with a supervision order within the meaning of the Children and Young Persons Act 1969 or a supervision requirement within the meaning of the Social Work (Scotland) Act 1968 or a probation order.

(4) A child is not a foster child while he is liable to be detained or subject to guardianship under the Mental Health (Scotland) Act 1984 .

(5) A child is not a foster child—

(a ) while he is placed in the care and possession of a person who proposes to adopt him under arrangements made by an adoption agency within the meaning of section 1 of the Adoption Act 1976 or section 1 of the Adoption (Scotland) Act 1978 ; or

(b ) while he is a protected child within the meaning of section 32 of the said Act of 1978.

Duties of local authorities

Duties of local authorities

S-3 Local authorities to ensure well-being of and to visit foster children.

3 Local authorities to ensure well-being of and to visit foster children.

(1) It shall be the duty of every local authority to secure the welfare of children within their area who are foster children.

(2) Every local authority shall cause such children to be visited by officers of the authority in accordance with regulations made under subsection (3), who shall give such advice as to the care and maintenance of the children as may appear to be necessary.

(3) The Secretary of State may make regulations requiring foster children in a local authority's area to be visited by an officer of the local authority on specified occasions or within specified periods of time.

(4) Subsections (1) and (2) are without prejudice to the provisions of the Social Work (Scotland) Act 1968 .

Notification of fostering to local authorities

Notification of fostering to local authorities

S-4 Notification by parents.

4 Notification by parents.

(1) The Secretary of State may by regulations make provision for requiring parents whose children are, or are going to be, maintained as foster children to give to the local authority for the area where the children are, or are going to be, living as foster children, such information about the fostering as may be specified in the regulations.

(2) Regulations under this section may include such incidental and supplementary provisions as the Secretary of State thinks fit.

S-5 Notification by persons maintaining or proposing to maintain foster children.

5 Notification by persons maintaining or proposing to maintain foster children.

(1) A person who proposes to maintain as a foster child a child not already in his care shall give written notice thereof to the local authority in whose area the premises in which the child is to be kept are situated, not less than two weeks before he receives the child, unless he receives him in an emergency.

(2) A person who maintains a foster child—

(a ) whom he received in an emergency, or

(b ) who became a foster child while in his care,

shall give written notice thereof to the local authority in whose area the premises in which the child is being kept are situated not later than one week after he receives the child or, as the case may be, after the child becomes a foster child.

(3) A notice under subsection (1) or (2) shall specify the premises in which the child is to be or is being kept.

(4) Where a person who is maintaining a foster child changes his permanent address or the premises in which the child is kept, he shall give written notice to the local authority—

(a ) not less than two weeks before the change, or

(b ) if the change is made in an emergency, not later than one week after the change,

specifying the new address or premises; and if the new premises are in the area of another local authority, or of a local authority in England or Wales, the authority to whom the notice is given shall inform that other authority and give them such of the particulars mentioned in subsection (5) as are known to them.

(5) At the request of the local authority, a person maintaining or proposing to maintain a foster child shall give them, so far as known to him, the following particulars—

(a ) the name, sex and date and place of birth of the child; and

(b ) the name and address of every person who is a parent or guardian or acts as a guardian of the child or from whom the child was or is to be received.

(6) A person maintaining or proposing to maintain a foster child need not give a notice under subsection (1) or (2) if the child has within the last 3 months been maintained by him as a foster child but ceased to be a foster child while in his care or on removal from his care.

(7) A local authority may exempt any person from the duty of giving notices under this section, and any such exemption may be granted as regards all or any such notices for a specified period, and may be revoked at any time by notice in writing served on that person.

S-6 Notification by persons ceasing to maintain foster children.

6 Notification by persons ceasing to maintain foster children.

(1) If a foster child dies, the person who was maintaining him shall give, not later than 48 hours after the death, written notice of the death to the local authority and to the person from whom the child was received.

(2) Where a foster child is removed or removes himself from the care of the person maintaining him, that person shall give, not later than 48 hours after the removal, the local authority and the person from whom the child was received the name and address, if known, of the person (if any) into whose care the child has been removed.

(3) Where a foster child ceases to be a foster child on his removal from the care of the person maintaining him that person need not give notice under subsection (2) but shall at the request of the local authority give them the same particulars as would have been required to be stated in the notice.

(4) A local authority may exempt any person from the duty of giving notices under this section, and any such exemption may be granted as regards all or any such notices for a specified period, and may be revoked at any time by notice in writing served on that person.

Disqualification for fostering

Disqualification for fostering

S-7 Persons disqualified from keeping foster children.

7 Persons disqualified from keeping foster children.

(1) A person shall not maintain a foster child if—

(a ) an order removing a child from his care has been made against him under this Act or any Act repealed by this Act or under section 12 of the Foster Children Act 1980 ;

(b ) an order has been made under the Children and Young Persons Act 1933 , the Children and Young Persons...

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