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Children Act 1989

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This is the original version (as it was originally enacted).

24Advice and assistance for certain children

(1)Where a child is being looked after by a local authority, it shall be the duty of the authority to advise, assist and befriend him with a view to promoting his welfare when he ceases to be looked after by them.

(2)In this Part “a person qualifying for advice and assistance” means a person within the area of the authority who is under twenty-one and who was, at any time after reaching the age of sixteen but while still a child—

(a)looked after by a local authority;

(b)accommodated by or on behalf of a voluntary organisation;

(c)accommodated in a registered children’s home;

(d)accommodated—

(i)by any health authority or local education authority; or

(ii)in any residential care home, nursing home or mental nursing home,

for a consecutive period of at least three months; or

(e)privately fostered,

but who is no longer so looked after, accommodated or fostered.

(3)Subsection (2)(d) applies even if the period of three months mentioned there began before the child reached the age of sixteen.

(4)Where—

(a)a local authority know that there is within their area a person qualifying for advice and assistance;

(b)the conditions in subsection (5) are satisfied; and

(c)that person has asked them for help of a kind which they can give under this section,

they shall (if he was being looked after by a local authority or was accommodated by or on behalf of a voluntary organisation) and may (in any other case) advise and befriend him.

(5)The conditions are that—

(a)it appears to the authority that the person concerned is in need of advice and being befriended;

(b)where that person was not being looked after by the authority, they are satisfied that the person by whom he was being looked after does not have the necessary facilities for advising or befriending him.

(6)Where as a result of this section a local authority are under a duty, or are empowered, to advise and befriend a person, they may also give him assistance.

(7)Assistance given under subsections (1) to (6) may be in kind or, in exceptional circumstances, in cash.

(8)A local authority may give assistance to any person who qualifies for advice and assistance by virtue of subsection (2)(a) by—

(a)contributing to expenses incurred by him in living near the place where he is, or will be—

(i)employed or seeking employment; or

(ii)receiving education or training; or

(b)making a grant to enable him to meet expenses connected with his education or training.

(9)Where a local authority are assisting the person under subsection (8) by making a contribution or grant with respect to a course of education or training, they may—

(a)continue to do so even though he reaches the age of twenty-one before completing the course; and

(b)disregard any interruption in his attendance on the course if he resumes it as soon as is reasonably practicable.

(10)Subsections (7) to (9) of section 17 shall apply in relation to assistance given under this section (otherwise than under subsection (8)) as they apply in relation to assistance given under that section.

(11)Where it appears to a local authority that a person whom they have been advising and befriending under this section, as a person qualifying for advice and assistance, proposes to live, or is living, in the area of another local authority, they shall inform that other local authority.

(12)Where a child who is accommodated—

(a)by a voluntary organisation or in a registered children’s home;

(b)by any health authority or local education authority; or

(c)in any residential care home, nursing home or mental nursing home,

ceases to be so accommodated, after reaching the age of sixteen, the organisation, authority or (as the case may be) person carrying on the home shall inform the local authority within whose area the child proposes to live.

(13)Subsection (12) only applies, by virtue of paragraph (b) or (c), if the accommodation has been provided for a consecutive period of at least three months.

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