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Amendments

October 2018

Updated Chapters
Chapter Title Details
Policies, Values and Principles (Values) A new Section 2, Corporate Parenting has been added in response to the DfE, Applying Corporate Parenting Principles to Looked-after Children and Care Leavers – Statutory Guidance (Feb 2018). It includes the seven corporate parenting principles set out in the guidance. It has also been reviewed and updated following the introduction of the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) and Data Protection Act 2018.
Care and Supervision Proceedings and the Public Law Outline Section 4.2, Case Analysis has been updated to reflect the ‘permanence provisions’ of the Care Plan added by s.8 Children and Social Work Act 2017 (amending section 31(3B) Children Act 1989) which a court is required to consider when deciding whether to make a Care Order. It has also been updated to provide some emphasis on parents who lack capacity and added links to the President of the Family Division, Family Proceedings: Parents with a Learning Disability note, and a relevant link to working with parents who have a learning disability (see Section 2, Pre-Proceedings) and Practice Direction 3AA - Vulnerable Persons: Participation in Proceedings and Giving Evidence (see Case management in Section 4, Documentation). The link to the Social Work Evidence Template (SWET) has been amended to the Research in Practice website which provides additional supporting information and guidance.
Notification of Children living Away From Home (Section 85 of Children Act 1989) This local procedure has been updated and should be re-read.
Death of, or Serious Injury to, Child in Community or Child in Care This chapter has been amended. From 29 June 2018, local authorities in England must notify the national Child Safeguarding Practice Review Panel within 5 working days of becoming aware of a serious incident.
Case Records and Retention Section 1, The Case Record has been updated in line with Adoption and Care Planning (Miscellaneous Amendments) Regulations 2018, which permits the transfer of a copy of the child’s case record (or part of that record) to another adoption agency when the local authority considers this to be in the interests of the child.
Relinquished Children Section 5, Consent and Competency has been updated to include additional information on parental capacity to consent, in line with High Court case-law.
Decision to Look After and Care Planning Section 2.1, The Care Plan – Contents has been amended to reflect the additional ‘permanence provisions’ of the Care Plan (s.8 Children and Social Work Act 2017 amends section 31(3B) Children Act 1989) which a court is required to consider when deciding whether to make a Care Order. Additional information has been added in to Section 1.3, Section 20 Accommodation, in line with recent case-law.
Permanence Planning Guidance Section 5, Assessing and Planning for Permanence has been updated to reflect the additional ‘permanence provisions’ of the Care Plan (under s.8 Children and Social Work Act 2017 amends section 31(3B) Children Act 1989) which a court is required to consider when deciding whether to make a Care Order.
Placements with Parents This chapter has been updated to reflect that the DBS has no eligibility for a standard or enhanced check for birth parents or other adults living in the household. However, the Local Authority has a requirement under the Care Planning, Placement and Case Review (England Regulations) 2010 to obtain information about unspent convictions and cautions before placing a child back with parents (see Section 1.2, Assessment and Checks before Placement).
Social Worker Visits to Looked After Children Section 2, Exceptions has been revised to set out more clearly the circumstances where visiting requirements differ from those set out in Section 1, Normal Frequency.
Looked After Reviews Section 9, The Role of the Looked After Review in Achieving Permanence for the Child has been amended to reflect the outcome of a High Court Judgement in respect of children who were subject to Section 20 and where there were concerns of significant delays in their planning for permanence. The court noted the IROs’ recognition and action over a number of reviews but acknowledged that a more robust response had been needed.
Contact with Parents / Adults and Siblings Section 2, Different Types of Contact has been updated to take account of the use of mobile communication with regards to contact.
Health Care Assessments and Health Care Plans A new Section 3.5, Consent to Health Care Assessments has been added.
Placement for Adoption - Parental Consent Section 1, Planning for Permanence has been updated to reflect the additional consideration (added by s.9 Children and Social Work Act 2017 amends section 1(4)(f) of the Adoption and Children Act 2002) into the list of considerations that whenever a court or adoption agency is coming to a decision relating to the adoption of a child), of the relationship which the child has with relatives, with any person who is a prospective adopter with whom the child is placed and with any other person in relation to whom the court or agency considers the relationship to be relevant.
Inter-Country Adoption Section 8, Home Study has been updated to include a link to GOV.UK Benefits.
Adoption Case Records Section 3, Security Retention and Sharing of Records has been updated in line with Adoption and Care Planning (Miscellaneous Amendments) Regulations 2018, which provides that an adoption agency may disclose an adoption case record to another adoption agency for purposes related to either agency’s functions as an adoption agency. Further information has been added in relation to adoption records where an Adoption Order is not made.
Fostering for Adoption, Concurrent Planning and Temporary Approval as Foster Carers of Approved Prospective Adopters Section 4.1, Duty to Consider Fostering for Adoption Placement has been updated to reflect the additional consideration (added by s.9 Children and Social Work Act 2017 into the list of considerations whenever a court or adoption agency is coming to a decision relating to the adoption of a child), of the relationship which the child has with relatives, with any person who is a prospective adopter with whom the child is placed and with any other person in relation to whom the court or agency considers the relationship to be relevant.

Next update: April 2019


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