The Agency Decision Maker is the person within a fostering service who makes decisions on the basis of recommendations made by the Fostering Panel. The Agency Decision Maker will take account of the Panel's recommendation before proceeding to make a decision. The Agency Decision Maker can choose to make a different decision.

The National Minimum Standards for Fostering 2011 provide that the Agency Decision Maker for a fostering service should be a senior person within the fostering service, who is a social worker with at least 3 years post-qualifying experience in childcare social work and has knowledge of childcare law and practice.