Home care funding benefits and allowances
The first thing to do once you know that there is a need for home care and support, be that for yourself, or for a loved one is to see if there is any entitlement to care funding.
There are different types of care funding, and you may be entitled to more than one of them. Some social care funding support is means tested or health and ability tested, whereas others are not.
The following is a guide to what might be available to you.
Local Authority funded home care – means tested
You may be entitled to social care funding support, subject to your financial circumstances. For more details contact your local social services who can advise you further.
If you have already been assessed by your local council as needing social services support, you are likely to be allocated a Personal Budget, this can be paid in the form of Direct Payments, Individual Service Funds (ISFs), or Individual Budgets.
You may come accross many other phrases for these but fundamentally they all mean the same important thing, that you have more choice and control over the care and support you receive.
Often, the Local Authority does not provide funding to cover everything that you wish to include in your care plan and only covers the basic essentials. You may wish to top up your care plan and pay for some extras yourself. It is possible to do this and many of our customers do.
There are benefits available which are not means tested, so you may be entitled to receive the below in addition.
Social care payments – not means tested
This is a benefit which is not qualified by how much money, assets, or pension you have but by your age, or your personal ability to perform necessary daily living tasks, please click on the link to find out more from the Directgov site.
Disability and long term sickness payments
If you have a disability, or a long term health condition or illness then you may be entitled to receive a Personal Independence Payment (PIP), which replaces the previous Disability Living Allowance (DLA). Personal Independence Payment helps with extra costs associated with long-term ill-health or a disability if you’re aged 16 to 64.
Financial assistance for older adults
You may be eligible to receive Attendance Allowance (AA) if you’re physically or mentally disabled and aged 65 or over. Attendance Allowance is for providing extra help with personal care needs.
You may be entitled to receive Carer’s Allowance, which is available to anyone who is caring for someone with substantial care needs. You do not have to be related to them, or living with them but you do need to spend 35 hours a week or more caring for them.
You may also receive Carer’s Credit which keeps your NI up to date.
If you are caring for someone, you will need to think about your time off. Direct Payments can be used for this. Carewatch provide repite care, we can also help with advice and guidance. Read more about our respite care services…
We have vast experience in working with individual budgets, direct payments and individual service funds. Whether services are funded by the NHS, or wholly or partly by your local council,we can help.
Further assistance with care funding
Payingforcare.co.uk is an impartial and consumer friendly website providing information on all aspects of care funding including local authority assessments, care entitlements, costs of care and arranging care for someone else.
Visitors have instant access to professional, specialist care fees advice through their live chat service.
What is a Personal Budget?
A Personal Budget is granted to those who have been assessed by the local council as having social care needs, depending on their financial circumstances. Personal budgets have been available in England since 2008. Depending on your circumstances, or choice, you may receive your Personal Budget either as Direct Payments, or as an Individual Service Fund (ISF).
What are Individual Budgets?
An individual budget is similar to a personal budget, except it is made up of other sources like the Independent Living Fund (ILF), which was granted to those with severe disabilities who are living within their community and staying at home, rather than in residential care. Click here for more information about Independent Living Funds.
What are Direct Payments?
Direct Payments are a Government initiative allowing individuals who have been assessed and require social services to purchase their own care and support and will be allocated a personal budget. You can read more information about Direct Payments on the NHS Choices Website.
By choosing to take your Personal Budget as Direct Payments, this enables you to have choice and control over how and when your money is spent but as a general rule, it must be spent on services and/or equipment that meet your needs for care and support based on your assessment. Carewatch can develop a Personal Support Plan with you, ensuring that your needs and wishes are met.
You can apply for Direct Payments from your council.
What are Individual Service Funds (ISFs)?
An individual service fund (ISF), are for those who can’t, or do not wish to manage the Personal Budget you have been allocated with to pay for care and support services. A service provider such as Carwewatch can be chosen by you to do this for you. Your chosen service provider will then hold your personal budget on your behalf, and you are still in control of how this is spent.
Your Personal Support Plan will be developed to decide how you want to spend your ISF and this will depend on the outcomes that you want to achieve and the way in which your chosen service provider will support you to achieve those.