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The Foster Placement (Children) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 1996

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Approval of foster parents

3.—(1) Except in the case of an immediate placement under regulation 11, a child shall not be placed unless the foster parent is approved under this regulation.

(2) Subject to paragraph (3), any authority and any voluntary organisation which is also a responsible authority may approve a foster parent.

(3) An authority or voluntary organisation—

(a)shall not approve a foster parent who is already approved by another authority or voluntary organisation; and

(b)shall not approve a foster parent in the area of an area authority unless it first consults with, and takes into account the views of, the area authority whom it shall also notify of its decision.

(4) An authority or voluntary organisation shall not give any approval under this regulation unless it has first—

(a)required the prospective foster parent to supply the names and addresses of two persons to provide personal references for him and has arranged for them to be interviewed; and

(b)obtained, so far as is practicable, the information specified in Schedule 1 relating to him and other members of his household and family,

and (having had regard to these matters) is satisfied that the person is suitable to act as a foster parent and that his household is suitable for any child in respect of whom approval is given.

(5) An approval given under this regulation may be in respect of a particular named child or children, or number and age range of children, or of placements of any particular kind or in any particular circumstances.

(6) Where an approving authority approves a person as a foster parent it—

(a)shall give him notice which specifies whether the approval is in respect of a particular named child or children, or number and age range of children, or of placements of any particular kind or in any particular circumstances; and

(b)shall nevertheless place no child with him unless he enters into a written agreement with it covering the matters and obligations specified in Schedule 2.

(7) Where an approving authority decides not to approve a person as a foster parent it shall give him notice of the decision.

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