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Types of care leaver

The law - The Children (Leaving Care) Act 2000 - which governs what we must do to support young people who are leaving care is complicated. Your legal entitlements depend on what type of care leaver you are, and this changes with your age. Below is a brief summary of the criteria for each category. However this is a very complex area, so we do encourage you to speak to your Personal Adviser if you have any queries.

Categories that the law uses:

Eligible child

  • Young person aged 16 and 17
  • You will have been looked after for at least 13 weeks since the age of 14
  • You are still looked after

Former relevant child age 18-21

  • Young person aged 18-21 who has already been an eligible child

Former relevant child age 21-25

  • Young person aged 21-25 who has already been an eligible child

Once a former relevant child becomes 21 you can choose whether to continue to have support. If you want support after age 21, this can continue until you are 25.

Other categories of Care Leaver:

Qualifying child

  • Young person age 16-25 
  • You were looked after, after the age of 16
  • You are no longer looked after

Qualifying child: Special Guardianship Order

  • Young person age 18-25
  • You were being looked after when a Special Guardianship Order was made 

If you are a care leaver and do not know your status, contact us.

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