What happens when foster parents get divorced? 


Fostering as a couple has many benefits – it’s often beneficial to have a support system around you, and sharing the responsibility can lessen the pressures and challenges that can come with fostering a child. However, it could be the case that a foster parent may find themselves in relationship difficulties and wanting to file for a divorce. This is circumstance is referred to as a ‘significant change’ and should be reported to the fostering service.

What is a significant change?

A significant change is when the fostering situation needs to be re-evaluated due to a change in the home. This can refer to many things, such as a death in the family, a divorce, or any other issue.

What happens when foster parents separate?

When separation happens, the foster parent should notify the fostering  service of the significant change. This will then lead to an assessment of the situation whereby the foster carer’s approval will need to be presented to the Fostering Panel. A meeting will be organised by the foster care professionals to discuss whether it is suitable for the young person to still be homed with one of the foster carers. The fostering team also discuss any additional support needed for the foster carer at this time – if one of the foster carers want to continue being a foster carer on their own, they will have to be re-assessed. However, if they want to leave fostering altogether, then it is encouraged that they hand in their resignation.

After the separation, there will be regular reviews just to ensure that the remaining foster carer has the support to continue with their placement. As they are now fostering as a single parent, there will be a new fostering assessment that will have to be completed and presented to the Fostering Panel.

How will Excel Fostering support you?

Here at FosterCare UK, our main priority is to ensure that the young person is in a suitable and stable home. In this situation, we prioritise assessing the foster carers’ ability to continue fostering. We help by offering extensive support for foster carers during their separation. This is a sensitive situation so we aim to provide as much assistance as we can.

Serious consideration will be given to both social workers and our fostering agency to decide whether the placement is able to continue. If one of the foster parents are leaving the home, this will also be taken into consideration.

For more information on fostering as a single parent, be sure to refer to our helpful guide. Or if you simply want to find out more about what happens in the circumstance of divorce and fostering, contact our helpful team today.

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