Looked after children are those who are in the care of a local authority, or are being provided with accommodation by a local authority in England in the exercise of their social services functions.
Previously looked after children are those who immediately after being in care (as defined above) became subject to an adoption order, child arrangements order or special guardianship order. They are also those who appear (to the admission authority) to have been in state care outside of England and ceased to be in state care as a result of being adopted.
Applications for looked after children must be completed by the designated social worker.
If you are making an application for a previously looked after child, who immediately after being in care became subject to an adoption order, child arrangements order or special guardianship order, you will need to attach to your application one of the following pieces of evidence:
- Special guardianship order – This order appoints one or more individuals to be a child's special guardian(s). Refer to Section 14A of the Children Act 1989.
- Child arrangements order – This order settles the arrangements of the person the child is to live with. Refer to Section 8 of the Children Act 1989, as amended by Section 12 of the Children and Families Act 2014. Child arrangements orders replace residence orders and any residence order in force prior to 22 April 2014 is deemed to be a child arrangements order.
- Adoption order – Refer to Section 46 of the Adoption and Children act 2002 or Section 12 of the 1976 Adoption Act.
If you are making an application for a previously looked after child who was in state care outside of England and ceased to be so as a result of being adopted, you will need to include with your application, evidence of the following:
- that your child has been adopted and;
- that your child was previously in state care outside of England (in the care of or accommodated by a public authority, a religious organisation, or any other provider of care whose sole or main purpose is to benefit society) immediately before being adopted.
Evidence must be sent to the Admissions Team by the application deadline. Send the whole document, as priority cannot be given without it. We may contact the local authority where the child was in care or previously in care to confirm the child's status.