If you have eligible needs and are ordinarily resident in your local authority’s area, Adult Social Care will assess your finances to determine whether you are able to pay for your care and support and, if so, how much.
A charge is made for most care services. How much you pay will depend on what you can afford. To calculate how much you can afford, the local authority will take into account your income (including any benefits you claim such as Attendance Allowance (AA), Personal Independence Payment (PIP), and Carer’s Allowance (CA) if paid to you because you care for a friend or relative), your savings and your expenditure.
If you move into a Care Home AA and PIP are counted as income if you are self-funding. If the local authority are paying for your care AA will stop 4 weeks after the move as the local authority have taken over responsibility for paying for your care. Carers Allowance will stop being paid to your carer 4 weeks after you move into a care home.
For further information about AA or PIP contact the Department of Work and Pensions via the website www.GOV.UK , your local authority, or contact us at Help & Care – Tel: 0300 111 3303 for Factsheet – Carers Allowance, Factsheet – Care Homes, and Factsheet – Attendance Allowance and Personal Independence Payment. Factsheets are also available on our website www.helpandcare.org.uk .
In accordance with the Care Act 2014 the local authority must apply upper and lower capital limits. The lower limit is currently £14,250 and the upper is £23,250 but these figures change annually so you may need to check with your local authority what the latest capital limit figures are.
Assets below the lower capital limit are disregarded. If you have assets over the upper capital limit you will have to pay for the whole cost of your care. If you have assets between the lower and upper capital limits the local authority apply what is known as ‘tariff income’. They will charge you £1 for every £250 of capital you have over the lower limit and up to the upper limit.
From April 2020 the upper capital limit will increase from £23,250 to £118,000. The lower limit will increase to £17,000, so between £17,000 and £118,000 you will be entitled to some financial support but a ‘tariff’ will apply. There will also be a £72,000 cap on the amount that any adult of state pension age pays towards the cost of care in their lifetime. (However, this only covers money spent on assessed eligible needs and excludes for example the cost of accommodation and food in residential care).
You can choose not to have your finances assessed but if you are not financially assessed, you will be asked to pay the whole cost of your care.
If you own your own property
If you own your own property and your care needs can only be met in a care home (residential care), then the value of your property will be counted as capital, unless it is occupied by any of the following:
Your partner (who is not estranged or divorced from you)
A relative of yours who is aged over 60, or is incapacitated
A child under the age of 16 years who you are liable to maintain
A lone parent who is your estranged or divorced partner
For further information about paying for care homes please see Help and Care Factsheet - Care Homes and contact your local authority or the organisations listed in the "Further information and contact details" section.