‘Former Relevant’ young people are Care Leavers 18-21, and were ‘Eligible’ or ‘Relevant’ prior to their 18th birthday. If you are in higher education, your entitlement for support goes until your 25th birthday (or the end of programme of higher education you are on).
As a ‘Former Relevant’ care leaver, you are not eligible for regular payments of Independent Living Allowance. You can claim ILA for two weeks after your 18th birthday, or until your application for benefits is processed.
So what support do you get?
- You can apply for Income Support, income-based Jobseekers Allowance, Housing Benefit and the same sorts of support that young people your age who weren’t in care would also get.
- qualify for the Setting Up Home Allowance.
- Priority status on the Housing List
- The support of a Personal Adviser to help keep you safe, find a place to live, keep healthy, and to achieve goals. You are entitled to some financial support, but the assumption is that your living expenses will be met through employment or benefits.
- A Pathway Plan with regular reviews, to make sure the support you get still makes sense for your needs as they change as you get older.
- Help with expenses connected to your work, education or training
- Keep in touch with you
- A visit from your Personal Adviser within 7 days of you moving house and at least every two months
If you are in higher education and under the age of 25
If you decide to go into higher education after your 21st birthday (but before your 25th), you will receive financial support equivalent to housing benefit and income support, depending on an assessment of your needs. Full-time students normally aren’t entitled to housing benefit or other benefits, but as a care leaver, you are.
If you are studying away from home, you are entitled to help in finding a place to stay when it isn’t term-time, and help in paying for this accommodation.
You also will get a special £2000 bursary per year on top of your finance from the University or from Student Finance England.