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Care and Support Charging and Financial Assessment Framework

2. Legal context

The Care Act 2014 – Charging and financial assessment 

Section 14 of the Care Act 2014 gives the Council the power to charge adults for care and support. This applies where adults are being provided with care and support to meet needs identified under Section 18, Section 19 or Section 20 of the Care Act 2014. These needs can be referred to as ‘identified needs’ or ‘eligible needs’.

When developing and applying policies the Council must take note of the following documents:

  • Care and Support Statutory Guidance; issued by the Department of Health giving detailed guidance to Councils on all aspects of the care Act 2014, including Charging and Financial assessment (chapter 8), Deferred payments (chapter 9) and associated annexes to the guidance, for example;
    • Annex A: Choice of Accommodation and Additional Payments
    • Annex B: Capital Limits, Financial Assessment and Treatment of Capital and Income
    • Annex C: Deprivation of Assets
    • Annex D: Deferred Payment Agreements
    • Annex E: Recovery of Debts
    • Annex F: Temporary and Short term residents in Care Homes
  • The Care and Support (Charging and Assessment of Resources) Regulations 2014; which sets out:
    • The power to charge for certain types of care and support (Part 2)
    • The duty under Section 17 of the Care Act to carry out a financial assessment (part 3)
    • Rules on the treatment and calculation of income and capital (including notional income and capital and deprivation) (parts 4 and 5)
    • Rules on sums to be disregarded (schedule 1 and 2)
  • The Care and Support (Deferred Payments) Regulations 2014; which sets out:
    • The rules on when the Council must enter into a deferred payment agreement (regulation 2)
    • The rules on when the Council may enter into a deferred payment agreement (regulation 3)
    • The rules on the security required and equity limit (regulations 4 and 5)
    • The power to charge interest and administration costs (regulation 9 and 10)
  • The Care and Support (Direct Payments) Regulations 2014; which sets out: 
    • Conditions for making a Direct Payment (regulation 3 and 4)
    • Steps the Council must take before making a Direct payment under Section 32 of the Care Act (regulation 5)
    • Direct payment and Care Home accommodation (regulation 5)
    • The Councils obligation to review Direct Payments (regulation 7)
    • The Rules on Capacity (regulation 8 and 9)
  • The Care and Support and Aftercare (Choice of Accommodation) Regulations 2014; which sets out: 
    • The Councils obligation on respect of the choice of accommodation (regulation 2)
    • The preferred accommodation conditions (regulation 3)
    • The payment of additional costs for the preferred accommodation (regulation 5)
  • The Care and Support (Preventing Needs for Care and Support) Regulations 2014; which sets out:
    • The Councils obligations in respect of prevention of care and support
    • Community equipment (regulation 2)
    • Providing care and support for reablement and intermediate services (regulation 4)

Future changes to care funding (2020)

The Care Act (Section 15 and 16) proposes a cap on care costs which limits how much a person would be required to pay towards their support needs over their lifetime and increases the level of capital a person can have and still receive financial assistance with care and support costs.

In March 2021 the government announced the implementation of Funding Reforms and a cap of £86,000 was proposed. This would mean a Service User would not pay more than £86,000 during there lifetime towards their care and support.

This does not include daily living costs in a residential placement which the government have proposed will be set at £200 per week and paid either in full or in part by the Service User depending on their financial assessment. This payment would continue after the care cap of £86,000 is reached.

The government has since completed a consultation on the purposed reforms and the results of the consultation are awaited.