Family Law Blog

Looking to adopt a foster child?

Posted by Danielle Micallef on 25 May 2017

You could potentially receive $37,000 per year to assist with their upbringing

There are currently 19,000 children in foster care within NSW. Providing foster children with a safe home is one thing, but in the words of Deborra-lee Furness and her charity Adopt Change, “every child deserves a family.” 

The NSW Government has just announced a new scheme for carers who adopt foster children, with an aim to support 900 more children every year. 

The new scheme involves ongoing allowances to families as a cash incentive to adopt foster children. These allowances will be determined by the age of the adopted child. It will see parents adopting children between the ages of 0 to 4, receiving a fortnightly payment of $488, whilst families choosing to take care of teenage children will receive $738 every fortnight. Minister for Family and Community Services, The Hon Pru Goward, told Sky News that this cash incentive “would break down financial barriers faced by some potential adoption parents.” 

As there is a large focus on providing adequate support to children with special needs, an allowance of up to $37,896 per year will be given to eligible parents who are willing to adopt a child with extra needs. 

There will be strict checks and assessments in place which will apply to all adoptive parents. Each family will be assessed on a case-by-case basis for adoption, with specific attention paid to ensuring that each child will have a safe, supportive and permanent home. The allowances will be determined by a means-test which is only available to family households that qualify for Family Tax Benefit A. 

To be eligible for the Family Tax Benefit A, you must satisfy an income test, fulfil all residence requirements, and be responsible for the care of the child for at least 35% of the time. You can find out more about whether you meet the eligibility criteria here

If you are planning to adopt a foster child, please contact our family law experts in Parramatta and Norwest to discuss how we can assist your application: