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Graphic of pink arrow representing Live-in Care funding

Funding

What financial help is available for Live-in care?

There is financial help available for care in your own home. We have written this page to give you an easy-to-read guide of the options that may be available to you. Alternatively, please contact us on 01264 319 399 to speak with a friendly person who can answer your questions on funding live-in care.  We can also recommend specialist independent financial advisers.

 

Firstly, we draw your attention to a non-means tested benefit (and our primary recommendation to apply for):

 

Attendance Allowance

This benefit is tax free and non-means tested. It is administered by the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP). 

It is for anyone who suffers with a physical or mental disability, where that disability is severe enough for them to need help funding care. The Attendance Allowance is also available for people over 65 who need help with the cost of having someone to look after them. There are rules that apply and an application to complete and submit. 

Currently there are 2 levels of benefits either £61.85 or £92.40 per week, you may also be eligible for extra pension credits, housing benefits or potentially a council tax reduction.

How do I apply for the Attendance Allowance?

Here’s the link for you https://www.gov.uk/attendance-allowance 

 

Council Tax Reductions

Further savings can be made to help fund live-in care with a reduction of council tax for people that are diagnosed with a ‘severe mental impairment’ (SMI).  Those living with dementia related conditions may well be included with a reduction or exemption from paying council tax.  

 

How do I apply for the Council Tax reduction?

Here’s the link for you https://www.gov.uk/apply-for-council-tax-discount

 

Government Funding for Care

In order to assess eligibility for 'live-in care funding' there are certain steps to go through as follows:

1 - Request a Care Needs Assessment

Your local council is obligated to perform a 'care needs assessment' for you regardless of income or savings. This is a free service.

 

What is a Care Needs Assessment?

A Care Needs Assessment identifies what 'kind' of care and support would help a person continue to live their best life. The 'assessment' can happen face-to-face or over the phone and typically takes about an hour. You'll be asked how you, or your relative is able to cope with everyday tasks, such as washing & dressing, walking around the home, cooking etc so they can build a clear picture of the support needed.

 

How do I apply for a Care Needs Assessment?

Here's a link for you https://www.gov.uk/apply-needs-assessment-social-services

 

2 - A Financial Assessment

Should your Care Needs Assessment deem you eligible for support, the next step would be a means-tested Financial Assessment to see if you qualify for any state funding.

How do I know if I might be eligible for financial support?

At the time of writing this document (September 2022), eligibility for the local council funding starts if you have less than £23,250 in savings.

 

Who can apply for a Financial Assessment?

You can apply for funding for live-in care as a relative or friend on a person’s behalf, but they must agree to it, unless you have Power of Attorney for them, of course.

 

How do I apply for a Financial Assessment?

If the results of the Care Needs Assessment show that you are eligible for assistance with funding the local Authority will arrange the financial needs assessment on your behalf.

 

What happens during a Financial Assessment?

A 'Financial Assessment Officer' will enquire about your financial assets e.g.

1.      earnings

2.     pensions

3.     benefits (including Attendance Allowance or Personal Independence Payment ‘PIP’)

4.     savings

5.     property (including overseas property)

NB They can also investigate retrospectively so you are unable to gift your property & savings away just before the assessment. They won't need to know about the value of any of your possessions or any life insurance policies.

Here's some great news! If you apply for funds for live-in care to stay ‘in your own home’, the value of your property will not be included in the means test.

What are the possible outcomes of a Financial Assessment?

1.      The council will pay the full funding of your live-in care*

2.      The council will pay some of the cost and you will pay the rest*

3.      You will pay for all your care

*If the council contributes towards funding your live-in care, they will arrange a ‘Personal Budget’ for you. The budget gives you an amount of money to spend based on how much it will cost in your local area to arrange the care you need.

 

Immediate Care Plan (ICP) also known as an Immediate Care Annuity

 

What is an ICP?

An annuity is designed to provide a steady cash flow for people during their retirement years and to alleviate the fears of outliving their assets. Available from insurance companies the product is best suited for those looking for security and a guaranteed retirement income. 

An Immediate Care Plan /Annuity will pay a tax-free regular income to fund your live-in care. This should be available immediately when live-in care is required. The cost is calculated individually based on health and age, how much income you need and what the cost of live-in care is going to be. The ‘plan’ then pays an agreed amount at regular intervals for as long as necessary

Where do I go to find out further information about an Immediate Care Plan / Annuity and how much would it cost?

You should always seek advice from a qualified Adviser – The Society of Later Life Advisers are an excellent resource to contact a local adviser in your area.

Here is the link for you to follow https://societyoflaterlifeadvisers.co.uk/

 

Equity Release

What is Equity Release?

Equity release is a ‘long-term loan’ which is eventually repaid using your home once you pass away. Until then you remain a homeowner and would not need to move out. It is particularly relevant to those wanting to receive live-in care for themselves or their partner and wishing to stay in their own home. 

Where do I go to find out further information about arranging Equity Release?

You should always seek advice from a qualified Adviser – The Society of Later Life Advisers are an excellent resource to contact a local adviser in your area.

Here is the link for you to follow https://societyoflaterlifeadvisers.co.uk/

 

 

NHS Continuing Healthcare (CHC)  

How do I know if I might be eligible for CHC funding?

CHC is for adults over the age of 18 who are assessed as having a primary health need resulting from a long-term complex health condition (E.g., resulting from an accident, disability, or illness). This means that the provided support is predominantly for healthcare, as opposed to social/personal care needs. It is arranged and funded solely by the NHS and is not means tested. 

To be eligible for CHC funding you would need to be assessed by a team of healthcare professionals. They will look at things such as:

  • What help you need

  • How complex your needs are

  • How intense your needs can be

  • Any risks to your health if the right care is not provided at the right time

 

Eligibility depends on your assessed needs and not on a particular diagnosis or condition.

How do I apply for a CHC Assessment?

You do not have to wait for a health professional to start the assessment you can request one yourself.

 

Here is the link for you to follow : https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/social-care-and-support-guide/money-work-and-benefits/nhs-continuing-healthcare and a number to access 90 minutes of free advice with a trained NHS continuing healthcare adviser  - 0345 548 0300

 

What are the possible outcomes of a CHC Assessment?

A decision as to whether you are eligible should usually be reached within 28 days of the assessment. If you are not eligible for CHC funding, you can still be referred to your local authority who will be able to advise whether you are eligible for any further support from them.

If you still have some health needs, then the CHC may pay for part of the package alongside yourself, and this would be known as a ‘joint package of care.’

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