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Care and Support Charging and Financial Assessment Framework

5. Chargeable care and support services

Charges for the following services are based on an assessment of your financial circumstances – for details see below and our paying for social care web page.

The Council will carry out a financial assessment. If the Council is aware (when your need for care and support arises) that you have capital above the Upper Capital Limit1, the Council will not carry out a financial assessment and will assess you as able to pay the full charge for your care home accommodation or provision of care service.

If your capital is mostly due to ownership of a property there are rules around whether this counts within the financial assessment see part 10.

If your capital is below the Upper Capital Limit2 or the Council cannot identify the level of capital you hold, the Council will carry out a financial assessment to work out your assessed weekly charge you will need to pay towards your care home accommodation or provision of care services.

Currently, your weekly assessed care charge is paid every week at the same amount as per your financial assessment. It is possible, in the future, that the Council may alter the charging framework to allow a more flexible approach to the provision of care and meet outcomes. This will mean that you will have a financial assessment to calculate your weekly care charge but this charge will be invoiced over a 4 week period.

If the Council alters the invoicing period to 4 weekly you will never be charged more than your assessed weekly care charge but you might be charged less.

For example if your assessed weekly care charge is £100 per week over 4 weeks this is £400, if you total cost of care over the 4 weeks is £800 you will pay £400, if your total cost of care over 4 weeks is £350 you will pay £350.

Young persons

Prior to a young person reaching 18 they are entitled to a Transitions Assessment by a social worker, Where a Transition Assessment identifies needs that are likely to be eligible, local authorities should consider providing an indicative Personal Budget so that young people have an idea of how much their care and support will cost when they enter the adult system. 

During this assessment their family or carer(s), as part of the preparation for the young person to transition to adulthood, will be given the opportunity to start to explore and discuss some of the changes to the provision of the care and support the young person may encounter as they transition to adulthood. 

When a young person reaches 18 they will be assessed by a social worker under Section 18, Section 19 or Section 20 of the Care Act 2014 and there eligible needs will be identified. 

Section 14 of the Care Act 2014 gives the Council the power to charge adults for care and support.

So that the transition from child services to adult services, in respect of charging, is as straightforward as possible the social worker will establish prior to the young person’s 18th birthday if they have capacity.

If the young person has capacity a referral will be made to the Client Finance team and a Care Finance Officer will arrange to meet with the young person and their parent or carer, the Care finance Officer will bring to this meeting a Calculation of Financial Charge form for completion and will also assist with signposting the young person and parent or carer to possible benefit entitlement. If a meeting is not possible the Care Finance Officer will post the Calculation of Financial Charge form.

The Care Finance Officer will use the Calculation of Financial Charge form to calculate the assessed weekly charge. This form can be signed by the parent or carer but will be left with the young person for signature and return on or after their 18th birthday (this can be returned by post or electronically). Upon receipt of the signed Calculation of Care Charge form the Care Finance Officer will confirm the assessed weekly charge amount to the young person by letter. 

If the young person has capacity but wishes to appoint a parent or carer to act on their behalf they can indicate this on the Calculation of Financial Charge form. 

If the young person lacks capacity a referral will be made to the Client Finance team and a Care Finance Officer will arrange to meet with the young person’s family or carer. The Care Finance Officer will bring to this meeting a Calculation of Financial Charge form for completion and will also assist with signposting the family or carer to possible benefit entitlement. If a meeting is not possible the Care Finance Officer will post the Calculation of Financial Charge form.

The Care Finance Officer will use the Calculation of Financial Charge form to calculate the assessed weekly charge, this form can be signed by the parent or carer subject to the parent or carer having a DWP appointee notice. The Care Finance Officer will confirm the assessed weekly charge amount to the parent or carer by letter. 

If the young person lacks capacity the parent or carer will need to apply for Deputyship as soon as possible after the young person’s 18th birthday, this process can take up to 6 months to complete, to allow the financial assessment to be carried out the Care Finance Officer will accept, whilst the Deputyship Order is awaited, evidence that the parent or carer has been appointed as a DWP appointee. The Care Finance Officer will require the Deputyship order to be provided within 9 months of the young person’s 18th birthday.

Some young people may be in receipt of an Education, Health and Care plan; this plan can remain in place up to the age of 25, subject to the Local Authority agreeing that the young person can remain in education and it can be shown that the young person will make progress.

For most young people any social care support will be provided by their home local authority3. The young person has the right to request a transition assessment for adult care that will enable them to see whether they are likely to have eligible needs that will be met by adult services once they turn 18. 

Young people with Special Educational Needs turning 18, or their carers, may become eligible for adult care services, regardless of whether they have an Education Health and Care Plan or whether they have been receiving care services under section 17 of the Children Act 1989. 

If the young person with Special Educational Needs or an educational Health and Care Plan is identified as having eligible needs a financial assessment for the social care element of any funding will be carried out.  The process will be the same as that outlined above. 

Residential care

You will pay your assessed care charge towards the costs of your care and support from the date you enter the care home (subject to your financial assessment and your capital assets).

If you have capital above the Upper Capital Limit4 the Council will assess that you are able to pay the full cost of your care in the care home.

If your capital is below the Upper Capital Limit or the Council cannot identify the level of capital you hold, the Council will carry out a financial assessment. The rules for this assessment will be those used for permanent residence.

Short term / respite stay(s) in care home accommodation 

Short term stays are up to 56 nights in any 12 month period5. Respites stays up to 4 consecutive weeks in any 12 month period and provide a break for informal carers. These costs can be paid using a direct payment6.

If you have capital above the Upper Capital Limit7 the Council will assess that you are able to pay the full cost of your short term / respite stay in a care home.

If your capital is below the Upper Capital Limit or the Council cannot identify the level of capital you hold, the Council will carry out a financial assessment. The rules for this assessment will be those used for temporary stays (see below)8

If you placement is an emergency the Council will still carry out a financial assessment. The rules for this assessment will be those used for temporary stays (see below)9.

If the respite / short term stay exceeds 28 / 56 nights during a year the Council will carry out a financial re-assessment using the Financial Assessment and Charging Rules for temporary stays (see below).

Temporary stays(s) in care home accommodation  

Temporary stays are intended to last for a limited period where there is a plan to return home. The stay should be unlikely to exceed 52 weeks10.

If you have capital above the Upper Capital Limit11 the Council will assess that you are able to pay the full cost of your temporary stay in a care home.

If your capital is below the Upper Capital Limit or the Council cannot identify the level of capital you hold, the Council will carry out a financial assessment to calculate your assessed weekly charge.

This assessment will be carried out using the rules for temporary stays in care homes12 

The rules include but are not limited to the following:

  • Your main or only home will be disregarded where you intend to return to the property or you have taken steps to dispose of the property to acquire a property that is more suitable.
  • The assessment will be carried out in accordance with the rules for permanent residents13 but an allowance is made for any additional amounts required to maintain the home:
    • Gas (standing charge only – non-mains: Oil only delivery costs)
    • Electricity (standing charge only)
    • Water (standing charge only)
    • Council tax (if applicable)
    • Mortgage (if applicable)
    • Rent (if applicable)
    • Ground rent (if applicable)
    • Service charge (if applicable)
    • Home Buildings and contents insurance14 (subject to evidence being provided of the amount being paid)

Non-residential care and support

Non-Residential care and support means care and support services provided to help you stay in your own home and involved in the community. Depending on your financial circumstances you may be asked to pay a charge towards your non-residential care and support costs.

If you have capital above the Upper Capital Limit15  the Council will assess that you are able to pay the full cost of your care services.

If your capital is below the Upper Capital Limit or the Council cannot identify the level of capital you hold, the Council will carry out a financial assessment to calculate your assessed weekly charge.

If your social care assessment shows you have ongoing eligible care and support needs you will be allocated a Personal Budget.

Your Personal budget may be used to purchase a range of care and support services. This includes commissioned services and services purchased through Direct Payments16.

Services include:

  • Personal assistants – people employed to assist with all aspects of daily living including personal care and social activities 
  • Home / domiciliary care – personal care in person’s own home to help with washing, dressing, eating / drinking to maintain independent living
  • Day care – an opportunity to meet other people and take up new opportunities
  • Transport – to and from social care / day centres if this is included in your care and support plan (unless you are in receipt of Disability Living Allowance or any Disability Living Allowance component of PIP)
  • Telecare – helps people to live independently in their homes by providing  technological help for example sensors and alarms
  • Supported living – a combination of all of the above usually provided by a single service provider
  • Other types of support – some people may choose to use their personal budget to meet their social care needs in a different way, for example, by buying a computer to assist with on-line shopping (to replace the need for domestic help) or a piece of assistive technology to prevent the need for home care intervention.
  • 1. See Annex B – Capital Limits Schedule.
  • 2. See Annex B – Capital Limits.
  • 3. Chapter 8 of the Care Act 2014 and page 134 of the SEN Code of Practice.
  • 4. See Annex B – Capital Limits.
  • 5. See Clause 8.34 of the Care and Support Statutory Guidance.
  • 6. See Clause 12.41-12.43 of the Care and Support Statutory Guidance.
  • 7. See Annex B – Capital Limits.
  • 8. See Clause 8.34 of the care and Support Statutory Guidance.
  • 9. See Clause 8.34 of the care and Support Statutory Guidance.
  • 10. See Annex F Clause 4 of the Care and Support Statutory Guidance.
  • 11. See Annex B – Capital Limits.
  • 12. See Annex F Clauses 10-20 of the Care and Support Statutory Guidance.
  • 13. See Annex C of the care and Support Statutory guidance.
  • 14. See Annex C Clause 49 of the care and Support Statutory guidance.
  • 15. See Annex B – Capital Limits.
  • 16. See Part 9.