Moving from children's to adult services

Transition into adulthood for all young people can be an exciting time of new opportunities, choices and increasing independence. However, it can also be a worrying time as young people move on from familiar people, services and places to face new challenges and responsibilities.

What transition means

For children and young people with special educational needs or a disability, when we talk about transition, we mean the change from being a teenager to being an adult, and from moving on from children's services to adults services. During this period young people can experience changes in lots of areas of their lives.

These changes may include:

  • Leaving education
  • Thinking about starting a job or work experience
  • Changes to their state benefits and finances
  • Moving into new accommodation
  • Changes to health and medical services
  • Changes in any social care support
  • Changes to personal relationships 

What transition planning involves

Children’s and adults’ services work together to identify young people who are likely to need to support from adult social care once they turn 18 years old. Transition planning usually begins in Year 9 (the school year in which the child has their 14th birthday).

If the young person is likely to be eligible for support from adult social care, a lead transition worker will be chosen to support the young person and their family and help write a transition plan. They will also agree when to complete the assessment for adult social care.

An assessment is simply a conversation that will help us understand the young person’s ambitions and what help and support the young person might need to live as independently as possible when they become an adult.

Services provided to young people are not always continued in the same way once young people become adults.  As part of an assessment, we will consider whether or not the young person meets the three conditions set out in the Care Act 2014, all of which must be met for a person’s needs to be eligible for care and support from the Council.

If the young person is not likely to be eligible for support from adult social care, the young person and their family will be offered information and advice about other support available in the borough. Any support from children’s services will continue until the child’s 18th birthday. Education Health and Care Plans (EHCP) can be continued until the young person is 25 years old.

Find out more

Achieving for Children’s Local Offer website provides information on local services and support available for families including children and young people aged 0 to 25 years old with special educational needs or disabilities. It includes a range of resources to help prepare young people for adulthood.

CarePlace is the directory of local services for adult social care in Richmond. The directory contains a range of services that support adults to stay independent, charities, advice services, groups and activities.


Adult Social Care and Public Health
Civic Centre
44 York Street

Telephone: 020 8891 7971 (Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm)

Updated: 10 February 2020