About care needs assessments

Find out what a care needs assessment is and what to expect when you have one.

What is a care needs assessment 

The assessment involves discussing with our social work team how extra support could aid your day-to-day living or that of someone you care for. This conversation is normally done in person. 

The assessment will help you find out your care needs and how to get the care and support you need. It will help establish if you qualify for any funded care from the council and can direct you to other partners and services.

Who can have a care needs assessment

We support our residents who need care and support. We do this by taking time to understand a person’s needs and giving clear advice. 

Anyone can request a care needs assessment, but there may be better routes to help you. When you request an assessment, a team member will speak to you over the phone to find out more about your needs. After this conversation, you may both decide that you do not need more input from adult social care and that other organisations or services can offer you the help that you need. 

You’ll only receive funded care from the council if:

  • you have a physical or mental impairment or illness
  • your illness affects 2 or more daily living tasks (like personal hygiene, keeping in contact with other people, or moving around the house)
  • your wellbeing is affected by what you can and cannot do
  • you have less than £23,250 in savings and assets

You are classed as a self-funder if you do not meet the criteria. Find out more about self-funding your care.

As a self-funder, you can still ask the council to arrange and manage your care. We will bill you, and there will be an arrangement fee on top of the care costs.

Learn more about eligibility for adult social care

If you want to find out what help there is in the community and from partner organisations, visit Connected Kingston

Request a care needs assessment for someone else

You can request a care needs assessment on behalf of someone else. Make sure that you answer the form questions as if you were them.

You’ll need their permission to formally request an assessment for them (unless they cannot make or communicate that decision themselves).

Care needs assessment process 

  1. Complete the eligibility questions and receive signposting for services that may be able to help you
  2. Continue to complete our form to request an assessment, if you want to do this
  3. We aim to contact you within 7 days to discuss your needs with you
  4. If we jointly agree to go ahead with a care needs assessment, someone will contact you to book an appointment to visit
  5. It can take around 6 weeks to complete the care assessment process. The more information you give us, the quicker this process will likely be
  6. You’ll also need to complete a financial assessment so we can work out how much you will need to pay for your care


The care needs assessment itself is free. 

If you’re eligible for our care services after the assessment, what you’ll pay will depend on your income and how much you have in savings and assets. 

What we mean by savings and investments

Savings and investments, sometimes referred to as capital, include things like

  • bank or building society accounts
  • national savings certificates
  • premium bonds
  • stocks and shares
  • land that you own
  • extra properties you own (at home or overseas)
  • business assets
  • any other financial asset

If you’re considering moving into a care home and you live alone, we may include the value of your house as part of your assessment. If you want to have care at home, we do not include the value of your house.

If you have over £23,250 in savings and investments, you’ll have to pay the total costs of your care unless your care needs fall into a small number of categories called continuing healthcare, where the NHS can fund social care.

You will still need a financial assessment if you have less than £23,250. This assessment, also known as means testing, will also look at any income and earnings you have, such as your pension, to work out how much you will need to pay for your care. The financial assessment will consider half of any jointly owned savings or investments you might have. 

Estimate your costs

Try our financial contribution calculator to get an estimate of what your care payments might be.

Information for professionals

If you work with someone who needs to be assessed under the Care Act, find out how you can make a professional Care Act assessment referral.

Care needs checklist and assessment request

If you need extra help but are unsure where to begin, you can use our care needs checklist. It will let you know if you’ll likely receive support and will direct you to the form to request a care needs assessment. 

If, after completing the checklist, you find that you are not eligible to get funded care from the council, the checklist will direct you to partner organisations and Connected Kingston, for information about services provided by our partners, charities and voluntary groups. 

Start care needs checklist

Last Modified: 17/05/2024 15:43:20