What is staying put?
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Staying put is a duty on children’s services. It is about helping young people to stay with their foster carers after they reach 18 and are no longer looked after. It applies even if the young person has been looked after in the care system by a kinship carer.
The duty is in section 23CZA of the Children Act 1989. It says children’s services should:
- Where consistent with the young person’s welfare, maintain a former fostering arrangement after the young person reaches 18. This would only be done if both the young person and their foster carer agree that the living arrangement should continue.
- Monitor the staying put arrangement; and
- Provide advice, assistance and support to a young person who is a ‘former relevant’ child and the foster parent so that the arrangement can continue until the young person is 21. Support from children’s services must include financial support (see section 23CZA(4) of the Children Act 1989).
The details of all these types of support can be found in our Children’s services duties to young people leaving care advice sheet.