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When a child is looked after by a
local authority

When a child or qualifying young person is looked after by a local authority

For Universal Credit, ‘looked after by a local authority’ refers to a child or QYP who is being cared for, or housed by, a local authority for a reason other than respite care.


The child may be placed with a foster parent or another family member.


The local authority will provide financial support for the child or QYP and the responsible person will no longer be eligible for the additional amount for children.


There are two exceptions where the additional amount for children will be awarded for a child or QYP who is looked after by a local authority. These are:

  • during a short break of respite care (if this exceeds 6 months, temporary absence rules will apply)

  • when the local authority places the child or QYP to live with, or continue to live with, their parent or a person who has parental responsibility for them

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