What does aging out mean?
“Emancipating’ or “aging out” of foster care means that when
a youth who is in foster care reaches the age of 18 they may lose of the
supports they counted on while in foster care - financial, educational, social,
The percentage of
youth that age out of foster care increased, from 8 percent in 2003, to 10
percent in 2013, or roughly 23,000 per year.
The Fostering Connections to Success and Increasing
Adoptions Act of 2008 amended Title IV-E to extend the age of Title IV-E
eligibility from 18 to 21. States are now able to claim federal reimbursement
for the costs of foster care maintenance payments made on behalf of Title IV-E
eligible foster youth until they are 21 years old. To qualify for reimbursement,
Title IV-E eligible foster youth age 18 and older must be either completing
high school or participating in an equivalent program; enrolled in
postsecondary or vocational school; participating in a program or activity
designed to promote or remove barriers to employment; employed for at least 80
hours per month; or incapable of doing any of these activities due to a medical
They can be living independently in a supervised setting as
well as placed in a foster home or group care setting, but the protections
afforded to foster children under age 18 (e.g., judicial or administrative case
review every 6 months) still apply. State child welfare agencies are also
required to help young people develop a youth-directed transition plan during
the 90 days immediately before they exit care.
If you are aging out:
Sign up for iFoster, it’s free and there are
resources that might help you.
Call iFoster at 1.855.936.7837 and we can assist.