Charges for non-residential care (community based services)
How much do I have to pay?
If we provide you with Community based services you may need to contribute towards the cost of your care package. The amount you will be asked to pay will depend on your income, savings and expenditure. It will also depend on the type of service you are receiving. Community Care includes home care, day care, supported living and Direct Payments
To find out how much you might have to pay, try our Online Financial Assessment Calculator. The Online Financial Assessment Calculator is designed to give you an idea of your likely charge. Your charge wil be finalised once you have returned a financial assessment form to the Council's Adult Social Care Finance Team.
You or your representative will be asked to complete a financial assessment form, so that we can work out how much, you will have to pay.
Our policy on charging for community based services is based on the Care Act 2014. Following a consultation process the Council's Charging policy was agreed by the Council in December 2016. You can find the answers to most questions you may have in our: Questions about paying for adult community care services section below. If you cannot find the answer here, you can Adult Social Care on 0208 547 5005 or the Adult Social Care Finance Team 0208 547 4778.
Questions about paying for community care services
Q1. What if I do not want a financial assessment?
A. It is your right to refuse a financial assessment. If you do not want to tell us about your financial details you do not have to. You will have to pay the full cost of the care fees and we will ask you to sign a form agreeing to this. See 'What if I have to pay the full cost' for further information
Q2 How can I get an idea of how much I may have to pay before my service starts ?
The Council is developing an online calculator which will give you an estimate about what you would be likely to pay if you require community care services. This will be available soon.
Q3. How much capital can I have?
A. You will have to pay the full cost of your care if your capital is above £23,250. This is called the 'Capital Threshold'. See 'What if I have to pay the full cost' for further information
Q4 . Will I have to pay?
A. If your capital is less than £23,250, you will not have to pay if your weekly income is less than:
- £189.00 and you are a single person aged over 60
- £131.75 if you are a single person aged between 25 and 60 years
- £112.75 if you are a single person under 25.
These rates may increase depending on the level of disability you receive and are applicable from 10 April 2017
You will still need to complete a financial assessment form as we will need to verify the information given. It may be that you have more income than the amounts above and will still not have to pay. This is because there are some types of income that are not taken into account. Examples of these are shown in - 'Are there any allowances of disregards?'
Q5. What if I think I will not qualify for financial assistance?
A. It may still be worthwhile having a financial assessment. It could be that there are benefits you are entitled to but have not claimed. Many people do not claim their full entitlement to benefit because they do not know all of the benefits that are available to them. We can help you to make a claim for anything you are entitled to.
Q6. How do I request a financial assessment?
A. Your Care Manager will ensure you are left with a financial assessment to complete and advise you of organisations who may be able to assist you complete the forms and provide advice about your finances including the potential for making benefit claims. The Council also offers a home visiting service for people who do not have anyone else to assist them complete the form. Your social worker/care coordinator will discuss this option with you.
Q7. What information will you need to include with the Financial Assessment Form
A. The Officer who completes the Financial Assessment will work out what the charge will be and will also help you claim all of the benefits that you are entitled to. The officer will need to see proof of all your income and expenditure. They will carry out:
- An income assessment
- A benefit entitlement assessment
- A disability expenditure assessment.
Q8. Are there any allowances or disregards?
A. Yes. Examples include:
- The 'Minimum Income Guarantee' *
- Savings Credit
- All earnings
- Council Tax payments (net ofpayments made from theCouncil Tax Reductions Scheme)
- Rent or mortgage payments (net of Housing Benefit)
- Water charges
- Disability Living Allowance (Mobility)
- £10 of a War Widows Pension, War Disability Pension or Armed Forces Compensation Scheme Payments
- War Widows Supplementary Pension
- Disability-related expenditure
* The 'Minimum Income Guarantee' is an allowance given in the assessment to cover the costs of everyday living. This allowance is taken from government guidance and will depend on your age, disability and living arrangements.
Q9. What is disability-related expenditure?
A. Please download the Disability Related Expenditure lealt for further information.
Q10 . How do you calculate the charge?
A. We will look at your assessable income and capital, deduct an allowance that the government sets (the 'Minimum Income Guarantee'), then deduct any expenditure you have told us about. The amount of income remaining will be the amount we will ask you to pay towards your care and support
Q11. What if I cannot afford the charge?
A. If you feel the assessed charge is more than you can afford to pay you can ask us to review it. This may be because you feel we have not allowed for all of the costs you have told us about or that we have made a mistake. If a mistake has been made or something has been overlooked we will correct it. The outcome of the review will be explained in writing to you.
If you still feel the charge is more than you can afford you can appeal against the decision. You may want to seek independent advice from a voluntary organisation
Q12. How do I pay?
A. We will send you or your representative a bill each month showing the amount you must pay. The easiest way to pay is by direct debit and we will send you a form to complete to set this up. Direct debit is the most cost effective and efficient way to pay; for both you and the council. There are other ways you can pay and these will be explained to you at the time your financial Assessment is completed.
Q13. Where can I get free independent advice?
A. Local organisations can offer independent advice about your financial assessment. These organisations include agencies such as:
Q14. What if I have to pay the full cost?
If you have to pay for the full cost of your care (e.g. if you have savings over the 'Capital Threshold'), you can still ask the Council to make the arrangements for your non-residential care and support services. The Council can enter into a contract to pay the provider on your behalf and you will need to pay the Council for all the costs incurred. If the Council agree to enter into a contract with your care provider, you will be charged a one-off Administration Fee of £250 to cover our costs. You will also be charged £9 for each week that the Council continues to make these arrangements on your behalf.