Home care and benefits entitlements
One of the key considerations for anyone seeking care provision – whether residential or via a live-in carer – is how the costs of care provision will be paid for. Your local authority may subsidise care costs subject to a means test, but if you possess capital and assets which exceed around £24,000 (figure varies slightly across the Home Nations) in value you are unlikely to be eligible.
Despite this there are a number of benefits, not all of which are means-tested, to which you or your loved one may be entitled and which can be used to cover some or all of the costs of securing long-term live-in home care.
Depending upon you or your loved one’s individual circumstances and care needs you may be eligible to apply for:
Anyone aged 65 or older and who needs continuing care and supervision due to a debilitating condition, physical or mental disability may be eligible to receive Attendance Allowance.
A tax-exempt and non means-tested benefit, Attendance Allowance is based purely upon the level of care required to manage your condition rather than taking into account any care you may currently receive.
An eligible person receives a fixed weekly payment of Attendance Allowance the amount of which will vary depending upon whether the recipient requires care either during the day only or at night only (currently £55.10), or around the clock (currently £82.30). A nominal increase in these payments is due to be made for April 2015-2016.
Disability Living Allowance/Personal Independence Payment
Currently, Disability Living Allowance is available to people below the age of 65 who have a disability or long-term illness which has significant adverse impact upon mobility, personal care, eating or the ability to carry out essential everyday tasks such as getting dressed etc. Disability Living Allowance is non-taxable and those eligible will receive a weekly payment which is commensurate with the degree of care needed by the individual.
A new scheme to replace the Disability Living Allowance was introduced in April 2013. The Personal Independence Payment is intended to provide financial assistance to anyone between the ages of 16 and 64 who has a long-term illness or disability which causes difficulties with activities related to mobility and ‘daily living’. An independent health assessment is conducted on behalf of the Department of Work and Pensions to determine the extent to which an individual’s condition affects their daily life. Those who qualify will then receive a weekly Personal Independence Payment (PIP) of between £21.55 and £138.05 depending upon the level of support required.
Council Tax discounts
An individual continuing to live in their own home and who has been formally diagnosed as living with a severe and permanent impairment of cognitive and social functioning such as that witnessed in the advanced stages of dementia will be exempted from paying Council Tax.
If this person lives with a partner, the partner will be classed as a single occupant and therefore the Council Tax bill for the property will be reduced by 25%.
It may also be possible to obtain a discount on Council Tax bill if an occupant of the property has a permanent disability for which adaptations or special facilities within the home are required to meet their care needs.
Since its establishment in 2009 The Good Care Group has won more awards for the quality of its fully-managed live-in care services than any other UK home care provider. You can find out more about how our one-to-one home care services can help you or a loved one to lead an independent and fulfilled life here. Alternatively, to speak to someone about your home care requirements please call us on 020 3728 7577.