View the Pan Lancashire SCB Manual
View the Pan Lancashire SCB Manual View the Pan Lancashire SCB Manual

5.1.14 Notifications from Other Local Authorities / Placement Providers

SCOPE OF THIS CHAPTER

This chapter addresses the action to be taken on receipt of a notification from another local authority that a Looked After child has been placed at an address in this authority.

AMENDMENT

In February 2017, this chapter was updated. Section 1, Introduction was updated with regards prior to placement the social worker must contact the Local Authority where the child will be placed to enquire if there are any risks attached to the identified placement which would make the placement unsafe for the child. Information was also added about when to notify the Police.


Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. Procedure on Receipt of Notifications in Relation to a Looked After Child

    Appendix 1: Notification of Placement of a Looked After Child form


1. Introduction

Where a Looked After child is placed by a local authority in the area of another local authority, notification must be made by the placing authority to the local authority's Children's Social Care Services where the child's placement is located. Prior to placement the social worker must contact the Local Authority where the child will be placed to enquire if there are any risks attached to the identified placement which would make the placement unsafe for the child.

The Education Service and the relevant Health Trust for the area in which the Looked After child is placed must also be notified.

The notification will include the address where the child is placed.

The Local Authority where the child is placed must maintain a register of Looked After children for whom it is responsible and all looked after children placed in its area, including those children who are the responsibility of another local authority.

Under the Children's Homes and Looked after Children (Miscellaneous Amendments) (England) Regulations 2013, the Manager of a children’s home must notify without delay the area local authority (if different from the placing authority) of the admission to/discharge from the Home of any child.

The notification must state:

  • The child’s name and date of birth;
  • Whether the child is Accommodated under Section 20 or subject to a Care Order or Supervision Order;
  • The contact details for:
    • The child’s placing authority; and
    • The child’s Independent Reviewing Officer;
  • Whether the child has a statement of Special Educational Needs and, if so, details of the local authority which maintains the statement;
  • Any presenting risks such as missing from home, child sexual exploitation, offending behaviours, involvement in gangs;
  • Any known health needs including disabilities;
  • Copy of the care plan and placement plan.

When to Notify the Police Force

The criteria for when to notify the Police Force is when any child is placed out of area and meets 1 or more of the following:

  • Is a victim of CSE;
  • Believed/suspected to be at risk of Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE);
  • Suspected/known to be a CSE perpetrator;
  • Has past episodes of missing/absent from care or home;
  • Has a gang involvement or association;
  • Is a trafficked child;
  • Is an unaccompanied asylum seeker;
  • It is recommended that the same information provided to local authorities be provided to the police force wherever possible. Additionally, it would be helpful if a digital photograph of the child could be shared with the police force.

1.1 The Register of Looked After Children

The Register should include the following information in relation to each child:

  • The name, gender and date of birth and ethnicity of the child;
  • The name and address of the person with whom the child is placed and, if different, the name and address of the child's parents and all those with Parental Responsibility;
  • The name of the placing authority;
  • Whether the child has a Child Protection Plan;
  • Whether the child is disabled;
  • The date on which the placement was made and the date when it terminated including the reason for the termination;
  • The child's legal status.

This information is stored on Protocol, and a report can be produced from the system. Such children can be identified by the prefix CLAE. 


2. Procedure on Receipt of Notifications in Relation to a Looked After Child

2.1 Responsibilities of the Children's Social Care Teams

Any notification received from another local authority that a Looked After child has been placed in the authority should be passed to the Safeguarding Unit admin team.

The Safeguarding Unit will ensure, through communication with the placing local authority where necessary, that the information required, is provided and recorded.

If a request for support to be provided is made in respect of the child, the placing authority will be directed to MASH – Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub. This would include where the placing authority has identified risks in relation to missing from home incidents or child sexual exploitation.

Where the placing local authority requests that the authority carry out certain functions in relation to the child on its behalf e.g. supervision of the placement, the MASH Area Team Manager will consider the request carefully.

In these circumstances, the authority may agree to undertake the following:

  • Supervise the placement in order to be satisfied that the welfare of the child continues to be suitably provided for; and/or
  • Visit the placement on a regular basis.

It would never be appropriate for the authority to agree to a request to supervise a child placed in secure accommodation and/or subject to Section 53 of the Children and Young Persons Act 1933.

Where it is agreed that the authority will undertake supervision of a placement on behalf of a placing authority, a social worker will be allocated. The placing local authority should be requested to provide sufficient information about the child and the placement to enable the social worker to supervise the placement competently, including the following:

The agreement to supervise the placement should be detailed in writing and signed by the appropriate Head of Service and a relevant Senior Manager from the Placing Authority. It should include an expectation that the allocated social worker in the supervising authority will be invited to contribute to the child's Looked After Review.

Where a significant incident arises in the placement whilst the child is placed, the authority where the child is placed will be expected to respond to the presenting needs. However, except in an absolute emergency (e.g. where it is not possible to contact the child's social worker or their Area Team Manager, or if out of hours the placing local authority's Emergency Duty Team), the authority should not take any significant action or remove the child, without consultation with placing local authority.

The authority should never take action on the basis of the placing authority's verbal authority, but must be certain that required actions are as a result of a written request.

At all times case management responsibility remains with the placing authority.

In the event that the authority where the child is placed has to have an involvement in an emergency situation where the child is at risk of Significant Harm and the placing authority cannot be contacted, any action should be on the basis of the requirements of local Safeguarding Children Procedures.

2.2 Maintaining the Register

The Service Leader Review and Quality is responsible for maintaining the register of Looked After children.

This register must include:

  • Children looked after by the authority;
  • Children looked after by another local authority but placed within the authority, where there has been agreement that the authority will carry out some of the responsibilities of the placing local authority;
  • Children looked after by another local authority but placed within the authority, where the placing local authority continues to carry out all the functions in relation to the child.

The Safeguarding Unit will ensure that the following teams / agencies are notified:

  • The Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG);
  • The Looked After Children Education Team.


Appendix 1: Notification of Placement of a Looked After Child form

Click here to view Appendix 1: Notification of Placement of a Looked After Child form

End