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Care and support services are not free. Most people have to pay something towards their own care and some will have to pay for all of the costs.
Your local authority (council) may cover some or all of the cost of care in some circumstances, but its help is "means-tested". This means that who pays depends on what your needs are, how much money you have, and what level and type of care and support you require.
If the local authority considers that you need support that it can provide, it may also carry out a financial assessment. This assessment will determine;
You will be given a needs assessment by a Social Worker, and if residential or nursing care is appropriate, you will then have a financial assessment.
If you apply for help from adult social care, as part of your overall assessment for care and support you will receive a separate financial assessment. This is carried out by our Financial Assessments Team. They will work out whether you qualify for financial help from us. If you do not, you are regarded as self-funding.
The financial assessment for residential or nursing care is different to the financial assessment for non-residential care. Importantly, savings and assets are calculated in a different way. If you have capital (excluding property) below the £23,250 limit you can receive Council funding. If you have capital (excluding property) above the £23,250 limit you will have to self- fund your care.
A financial assessment officer will arrange to meet with you and/or your financial representative to carry out a financial assessment and will calculate your anticipated weekly income by totalling:
Some income is disregarded in full such as Disability Living Allowance or Personal Independence Payment mobility component. Some income such as War Pensions is either fully or partially disregarded depending upon who it was awarded to.
Your contribution is your total weekly assessable income, less a standard amount set by the Government for your weekly personal expenses. This is £24.90 per week in financial year 2019/20.
We will make a decision as to whether or not your property should be included in your assessment of charges.
Automatic reasons to disregard a property:
There are some circumstances where property is disregarded:
The Council can use a discretionary power to disregard a property in exceptional circumstances. To apply for this you need to submit a written application to the Financial Assessments Manager, stating why your property should not be included in the assessment.
If a property is not to be disregarded, you or your representative will be asked to sign a form, agreeing to reimburse our contribution from the net proceeds, following the sale of your property.
We will not try to reclaim any funding for the first 12 weeks of your permanent placement, if your property is taken into account in their assessment. Funding for respite or short stay care does not count towards the 12 weeks and is not reclaimed.
If you require nursing care, you will receive an assessment of your nursing care needs from the NHS, to calculate the amount which can be paid towards the overall cost of your care home.
The assessment will determine if you are entitled to continuing healthcare funding, where the NHS will pay the full cost of the nursing care placement. If you are not entitled to continuing healthcare funding, the NHS may pay a standard contribution, £158.16 per week during the financial year 2018/19 towards the nursing care you require.
The standard contribution made by the NHS will be taken into account by adult social care when they assess how much can be paid towards the weekly charge for your care home.
You are free to choose a care home which charges above the Local Authority support level, as long as a third party agrees to pay the difference between the charge and the support level from their own funds. This is called a third party top up.
Except in limited circumstances, you would not be expected to pay your own third party contribution from your own funds. Anybody who agrees to pay a third party contribution should note that contributions may increase over time.
If you feel your charge is unreasonable, you have the right to appeal. Please contact the Financial Assessments team for details about the appeals process.