To be able to get the support set out in this website, you must have been in care for a period of at least 13 weeks (or periods amounting to 13 weeks) which began after age 14 and included some time after your 16th birthday. If you are not sure whether you qualify for support then speak to your personal adviser. The amount and type of support you will be able to access depends on your age and your circumstances. In order to understand the support that you are entitled to receive you will need to understand some key words which are used to describe the status of care leavers.
You are an Eligible Care Leaver if...
- you are aged 16 or 17; and
- you are currently a young person in care, and
- you have been in care for a period of at least 13 weeks since the age of 14, which must include at least 1 day after your 16th birthday.
You are a Relevant Care Leaver if...
- you are no longer cared for by the Local Authority but you have previously been
- an ‘Eligible’ care leaver and,
- you are 16 or 17 years old.
You are a Former Relevant Care Leaver if...
- you are aged between 18 and 21 and before reaching 18 you were or had been a Relevant Care Leaver or
- Immediately before you stopped being cared for you were an Eligible Care Leaver.
- If at the age of 21 and up to reaching the age of 25 where you continue or return to be in full time education or training then you can remain as a Former Relevant Care Leaver for the duration of the agreed programme.
You are a Qualifying Care Leaver if...
- You are at least 16 and
- You were a cared for young person prior to the making of a Special Guardianship Order which was in force when you reached 18, or If at any time after you reached the age of 16 you were no longer looked after, or accommodated or,
- You were privately fostered and assessed to be in need.
As a Qualifying Care Leaver you are able to access advice and assistance based on an updated needs assessment completed by the Care and Support Service.
Extension to 25 years old
The Children and Social Work Act 2017 extends the age of which you can access support and guidance up to 25 regardless of if you are in education, employment or training. If you are unsure if you entitled to receive this support then please contact the Care and Support Service on 0161 253 6666 and ask to speak to the duty worker.