Current Legislation & Policy

From 1st September 2017, all young people leaving state care upon reaching the age of 18 will have the right to an aftercare plan to identify any future supports they may require.

Section 45 of the Child Care Act 1991 now places a statutory duty on Tusla to form a view in relation to each person leaving care as to whether there is a “need for assistance” and if it forms such a view, to provide services in accordance with the legislation and subject to resources. The core eligible age range for aftercare is from 18 years up to 21 years. This can be extended until the completion of a course of education in which a young person is engaged, up to the age of 23 years.

As per the Child and Family Agency TUSLA website;

“The Child and Family Agency provides leaving and aftercare services for young people which are responsive and relevant to each young person’s circumstances under Section 45 of the Childcare Act 1991. All young people who have had a care history with the Agency are entitled to an Aftercare Service. Services are provided on the basis of assessment of need, age and the length of time the young person was in care.

Services are provided in partnership with a wide range of statutory and non-statutory agencies.Preparation for leaving care starts when a young person enters into the Care system but formal preparation should begin no later than the young person’s 16th birthday and the approach to aftercare is informed by the wishes and agreement of the young person. Services can be provided up to 21 years of age or 23, if in full time education, for those young people who are eligible as per Section 45 of the Child Care Act 1991″.