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Paying For Care

How Will My Care Be Funded?
Understandably, the cost of paying for care can be significant, and this is often a concern for the resident and their family. We aim to offer the highest standards of care available at affordable prices. Fees are calculated on a weekly basis, and depend on the type of care required and the size of bedroom chosen.

When thinking about the funding of care and identifying if you will be required to pay for your care or whether your care will be funded the following rules of thumb can be applied.

As At April 2015
If you have £23,250 in capital or above you will be expected to meet 100% of the cost of your care.
If you have between £14,250 and £23,250 in capital you will be expected to pay a contribution towards the cost of your care. The amount you will contribute will be identified following a financial assessment by your local Social Service Department. However generally for every £250 that you have over the lower amount of £14,250, the local authority will deduct £1 per week from the contribution they will pay towards your care.

If you have below £14,250 in capital you will not be expected to pay towards the cost of your care.

These figures are indicative and can change year on year as government policy changes. You will be expected to contribute benefits (such as Income Support and Retirement Pension) and any private pensions in order to cover the cost of care fees. It is highly recommended that you do make contact with your local authority/social services in the first instance as they will be able to provide further financial assistance. Even if you don’t qualify for any contributions initially, you may become eligible in the future.

If you are paying for your care yourself, you may be entitled to the following benefits:

Attendance Allowance
This is a non means tested benefit payable irrespective of capital or income to those needing help with basic tasks. It has two levels, a lower or daytime rate and a night time or higher rate.

Lower Rate : £55.10 per week

Higher Rate : £82.30 per week

Pension Credit
This is the restructured alternative to Income Support and offers two basic types of benefit – one which is designed to ensure a minimum guaranteed income and the other which to a degree is designed to assist those who have savings or additional private income.

Continuing Care Benefit
Total funding for care for those with an acute care need.

For further information you can contact the non profit advocacy service, Care Aware www.careaware.co.uk, or Age UK www.ageuk.org.uk

If you are funded by the local authority, you will be expected to use all of your income, including your pension and benefits to help fund your care, except for a nominal sum of £24.40 (England) per week for your day to day spending money. However, if you are paid the Mobility component of the Disability Living Allowance you will continue to get this. If you are over 65 you may also be entitled to a maximum credit of £20.70 per week of any savings credit.

If you own your own home when the local authority completes their financial assessment they will look at all of your assets including your home and pensions. They will only include your home if you live alone or if you have a partner, if both of you are moving into a care home. There are specific rules regarding whether certain close relatives are able to continue to live at the home.

Additionally the local authority will disregard the value of your property for the 12 weeks after your admission to a care home, as long as your stay is permanent. This is called a ‘12 week disregard’.

Regardless of whether you are funding your own care, or having your care funded from Social Services you are entitled to choose your care home.

If you choose a care home that costs more money than Social Services are prepared to contribute to, then you can add to their contribution to make up the short fall in fees (third party top-up). It is therefore worth enquiring with Social Services about the level of funding that they will contribute, so that you know the likely short falls that you will need to be prepared for, before looking at Care Homes to ensure that you visit homes in the appropriate pricing bracket. Once you are aware of the Social Services contribution, you can start looking for suitable homes. This contribution cannot be paid by the prospective resident themselves for legal reasons; however a friend or family member may do so.

If your financial circumstances mean that you are funding your Own Care you are then of course at liberty to visit you local homes and make your own decision about your care.

If your capital falls below the upper limit of £23,250 whilst you are in a care home, you become what is referred to as ‘depleted’ and therefore you will be eligible for funding from the local authority. It is important that you keep the care home manager informed if this is likely to happen so that they can help you arrange the appropriate funding.

There are also various financial planning schemes for long-term care that can help you pay for care home fees. These generally consist of paying one large sum, or insurance premium, when you move into a care home and should provide a fixed payment for as long as you need care. We recommend contacting an independent financial adviser who specialises in care fees planning.

Once you have found a home you like, the home will then offer to make an assessment of your needs, so that they can be sure they can offer you the right kind of care.

Once an assessment has been undertaken, the care home in question should write to you outlining the fact that they can meet your needs, and detailing the weekly costs for same.