Care Questions Answered
What is state care?
State Care means you are placed in care after a Judge decides that this is in your best interests. This can happen if that your parents are unable to give you the care you need to keep you safe and protected at home.
If you are taken into care you could live in:
- Foster Care
This is living with Foster Parents that care for children and look after you in their home
- Relative Care
This is living with a family member such as a Grandparent, Aunt, Uncle or another member of your family where they will care and look after you in their home.
- Residential Care
This is living in a house with other young people in care and residential care staff.
Who is the Child & Family Agency or Tusla?
How can I be taken into care?
Voluntary Care: Voluntary care is when your parents agree with The Child and Family Agency (Tusla) that the best option for you is to be taken into care. In some cases parents are unable to cope due to illness or other problems, and they may agree to their children being taken into care. In such cases while The Child and Family Agency has care of the children, it must consider your parents’ wishes as to how your care is provided. The CFA must provide you with care as long as it’s required.
Care Orders: There are a number of ways that the CFA (Tusla) work with children. The CFA may apply to the courts for a child to be placed in care. There are a number of different care orders:
Emergency care order – maximum of 8 days in care
Interim care order – maximum of 29 days in care but may be extended
Full Care order – can continue up to age 18
Interim special care order – maximum of 28 days but may be extended
Special care order – maximum of 6 months but may be extended.
Who will look after me while I am in care?
Can I choose where I live when I go into care?
Should I be allocated a social worker when I go into care?
What happens if I don’t get a social worker?
What is a care plan?
What are my rights if I am taken into care?
See also: Your Rights
What is a Child in Care Review meeting?
The Child in Care Review aims to review your care placement and plan your future care e.g. decisions about access to family and education.
Can I go to my Child in Care Review?
Can I see what is in my care plan?
Can I bring an Advocate to my Child in Care review?
Can I keep in touch with my family and friends if I went into care?
Can I make a complaint if I am not happy?
If you are not happy about something you can speak to your social worker, parent, teacher or any adult that you trust about the issue you have. This can mean that your opinion is heard and a solution to your issue can be found. If this does not work for you can make a formal complaint. The complaints officer will then investigate your complaint and come back to you with a response.
Visit the TUSLA website for more information about how you can make a complaint.