Frequently Asked Questions

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Foster Care

Why are children placed in foster care?

In many instances children are placed in foster care due to abuse or neglect or unavailability of parents or relatives to provide care.  Parents may also request placement due to an inability to care for the child. 

I am a single parent, may I still be licensed as a foster parent?

Foster parents may be single, married, widowed or be in a significant long term partnership.  Foster parents may own their own home or may rent.

How long does it take to become licensed as a foster parent?

This process may take approximately two to three months to complete.   There are circumstances that may require more time such as requiring more information, awaiting references, background checks and other documents.  The process allows an opportunity for agency coordinators to learn about the family, potential foster parents to learn about the agency, to assure a good fit for children and for the family to learn more about the program and make an educated decision and plan to foster.

How long are children in foster care?

Children may be in foster care for one day or longer.  The goal of foster care is assist the family in improving their situation so that the child can return to their home that is safe and can meet the needs of the child.  The goal is to provide a permanent home for the child.  If after 15 months it is likely that the child cannot return home in the near future, and certain other elements exist, the plan may move to permanent placement with a fit and willing relative or adoption.  The child’s biological family and the foster family will be a part of the process of planning for permanency for the child throughout the time the child is in care.

How are foster parents compensated for the care of the child?

The State of Wisconsin has a Uniform Fee Schedule for reimbursement to Foster Parents.  Payments to foster parents are considered reimbursement for expenses to meet the child’s needs and are not considered income in most instances.  For more information, view the  Uniform Foster Care Rate Schedule.