Placement plan

Also known as the Placement Information Record, placement plans are different to care plans in that they provide information about how the day to day parenting tasks will be shared between the parent and the carer. They also include information about who will pay for what.

A placement plan should be informed by the care plan, and as with the care plan should ideally be drawn up before a child starts to be looked after. An effective placement plan will ensure that the carer has information about the child including their health, education, emotional and behavioural needs, the child's likes and dislikes, routines and how these all affect the child on a day to day basis.

If previous placements have broken down then information should be included in the placement plan as to what led to the placement breakdown (e.g. was there unacceptable or violent behaviour?).

Placement plans should highlight the strengths as well as the difficulties.

For more information as to the specific requirements of a placement plan see document at bottom of page (excerpt from Care Planning, Placement and Case Review Guidance, 2010).

Short breaks

A placement plan must be completed when a child is placed in short breaks. There must be a clear focus on roles and responsibilities of those involved as well as safeguarding responsibilities. The nature of short breaks means that it is even more vital that the child is adequately supported. More information about short breaks.

Placement plans for children placed back with parents

When a child is subject to a Care Order or an Interim Care Order and is placed with their parents under Placement with Parents Regulations a placement plan must be drawn up setting out what support and services will be provided to the parents, when parents should notify the local authority of changes in their circumstances (e.g. new partner moving in) and the processes for making changes, staying elsewhere with the child. The plan must also state what could lead to the placement coming to an end.




Person responsible



Placement plan to be completed, to include signed consent to placement and signed consent to medical treatment for the child by parents

Social worker

Prior to placement if planned, or within five working days of placement being made


A new placement plan to be drawn up and signed for every new placement

Social worker

Within five working days of placement being made (or beforehand if placement move is planned)


Placement plan completed and authorised by manager

Social worker and first line manager

Within five working days of placement being made


Copy of placement plan to be provided to carer or manager of the residential unit

Social worker

Within two days of placement plan being approved


Placement plan to be shared with the child in a manner appropriate to their age and understanding

Social worker

Within two days of placement plan being approved


Copy of placement plan to be provided to the parents and those with parental responsibility, unless there are exceptional circumstances where this should not happen in order to keep the child safe

Social worker

Within two days of placement plan being approved