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Eligibility criteria

This is a local list of categories and conditions used to help allocate support within children’s services. It helps children’s services to decide which families should receive extra support.

The criteria help to set priorities. Local authorities have limited budgets. They cannot provide extra support for everyone. They have to draw up rules for deciding which families are highest priority.

By law, children’s services have to provide a range of support services for children in need and their families. However, they will only give extra support to those children whose needs meet the local criteria. The criteria will vary from one local authority to another. The variations depend on the resources available to that local authority.

Eligibility criteria should be published. Children’s services will most likely publish the criteria on their website.

It is not only children’s services who apply eligibility criteria. Local authority adult services also use eligibility criteria to decide which adults with disabilities they can help, for example.

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