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Carers (Scotland) Act 2016

Meaning of responsible authority: young carers
Section 19 - Responsible authority: general

54.Subsection (1) sets out who the “responsible authority” is in relation to a young carer. Where the young carer is a pre-school child, the responsible authority will be the health board for the area in which the child resides. In any other case, the responsible authority will be the local authority for the area in which the young carer resides.

55.Subsection (2) provides that subsection (1) is subject to section 20 – Responsible authority: special cases.

56.Subsection (3) provides what this section and section 20 mean by “pre-school child”. This is defined by reference to section 36(3) of the Children and Young People (Scotland) Act 2014 and means—

  • a child who has not commenced attendance at a primary school, or

  • if the child is of school age, a child who has not commenced attendance at a primary school because the relevant local authority has consented to the child’s commencement at primary school being delayed.

57.A child is of school age if the child has attained the age of five years but is under the age of 16 years (see section 31 of the Education (Scotland) Act 1980).

Section 20 - Responsible authority: special cases

58.Subsection (1) provides that where a young carer who is a pre-school child resides in the area of a different health board, by virtue of a placement by another health board or local authority, the health board for the area in which the young carer resided immediately before that placement is the responsible authority in relation to the young carer. “Pre-school child” has the meaning given by section 19(3).

59.Subsection (2) provides that where the young carer is a pupil at a public school which is managed by a local authority other than the one for the area in which the young carer lives, the other authority is the responsible authority in relation to the young carer.

60.Subsection (3) provides that where the young carer is a pupil at a grant-aided school or an independent school, the directing authority of that school is the responsible authority in relation to the young carer. “Directing authority” is defined in section 41(1) as having the same meaning as in section 45 of the Children and Young People (Scotland) Act 2014, that is the managers of a grant-aided school or the proprietor of an independent school.

61.Subsection (4) provides that subsection (3) will not apply where the young carer is a pupil by virtue of a placement by the local authority for the area in which the young carer lives.

62.Subsection (5) sets out that “grant aided school”, “independent school” and “public school” have the meanings given by section 135 of the Education (Scotland) Act 1980, as follows—

  • “grant-aided school” means, with the exceptions specified there, a school in respect of which grants are made by the Scottish Ministers to the managers of the school;

  • “independent school” means a school at which full-time education is provided for five or more pupils of school age (whether or not such education is also provided for pupils under or over that age), not being a public school, a grant-aided school, or a self-governing school under the Self-Governing Schools etc (Scotland) Act 1989;

  • “public school” means any school under the management of an education authority, that is a local authority.

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Text created by the Scottish Executive department responsible for the subject matter of the Act to explain what the Act sets out to achieve and to make the Act accessible to readers who are not legally qualified. Explanatory Notes were introduced in 1999 and accompany all Acts of the Scottish Parliament except those which result from Budget Bills

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