How much you will pay for care and support
There is a process to go through to work out how much you will pay for your care.
- Arrange to have a care needs assessment to understand what support you need. The assessment is free of charge.
- Calculate your personal budget to find the cost of the services you need.
- Carry out a financial assessment looking at your capital and income to calculate how much you will pay towards your care and support services. Estimate how much you may need to pay.
If you are going into residential care, please read our paying for residential care information.
Total cost of your care
If we are able to support you, we will then work out your personal budget. Your personal budget is the total amount that we think it will cost to buy the care services you need.
To start with this figure will be an estimate and is called your estimated personal budget. We will confirm the final amount after we agree your care and support plan.
If you are living in an extra-care housing scheme, your personal budget will always include an amount for the 24 hour a day emergency cover they provide. This will be added to the cost of any regular care and support you receive. If you are in a Shared Lives service, we will work out the cost of the care and support you receive in a specific way. Your social care contact will be able to explain this to you.
Once we have agreed the total cost of your care and support, we will work out how much you will be required to contribute towards the cost of all chargeable services you receive. We do this by carrying out a financial assessment which is means tested. The financial assessment may take place in your home or over the telephone.
A financial assessment looks at your capital and your weekly income to see how much you can pay towards the cost of your care.
- Your capital includes most savings and investments including the value of any second properties or land but not the home that you live in.
- Your income includes most pensions and benefits, and any other money you may have coming in, and an assumed level of income from any savings and investments.
If we already hold your financial information from a previous financial assessment or if your income and capital has already been verified by the Department for Work and Pensions, we can complete the financial assessment without contacting you or your representative.
We will tell you about the benefits you can claim. When we work out your contribution, we will assume you have the income from these benefits.
After we have completed your financial assessment, we will write to you to give you information about what you need to pay. All charges are reviewed on an annual basis.
If your income, benefits, pension, savings or investments change you will need to tell us as soon as possible. If you do not tell us about changes in your financial circumstances, which meant we were undercharging you, we may backdate to the date the charge increase would have applied.
Money or capital you have given away
If you give away money or capital assets to avoid paying for your care this is seen as ‘Deprivation of Assets’ and will mean the assessment of how much you can afford to pay will still include the value of the assets that have been given away.
We will discuss the circumstances, reasons given and timing around the giving away of the money or capital assets with you. We will decide if you could have reasonably foreseen your need for care and support at the time you gave away the money or capital assets and was it done for the sole or main purpose to reduce the amount you are charged towards your care or to be eligible for support from us sooner than expected.
In some circumstances, we can legally ask the person who was given the money or capital assets to pay some or all of your care costs.
If you have over £23,250 in capital
If you have over £23,250 in capital (which includes savings and investments) or you choose not to disclose your financial information you will not qualify for any financial assistance and then you will need to pay the full cost of your care directly to your chosen provider.
When we look at your capital we do not include the value of the home that you live in.
You can ask us to arrange the delivery of your care and contract with the provider on your behalf. We will charge an annual arrangement fee of £119.51 to pay for the administration associated with accessing care through us. This will be paid in weekly instalments (£2.29 per week) and added to the cost of any regular care and support you receive.
If you have less than £23,250 in capital
We will look at your weekly income to see how much you can afford to contribute to the cost of your care and support. Your weekly income includes most pensions and benefits.
If you have capital between £14,250 and £23,250, we will add your weekly income to an assumed income of £1 per week for every £250 (or part of £250) over £14,250. This is called a tariff income.
Tariff income example
You have £17,250 in savings
£17,250 savings minus the lower capital limit of £14,250 = £3,000
£3,000 ÷ £250 = £12.
This means a tariff income of £12 a week based on your savings.
Income we do not take into account
There will be certain parts of your income that we will not take into account.
- An amount called the Minimum Income Guarantee (MIG), this is an amount specified by the Department of Health to meet daily living costs such as food and utilities.
- Income used to pay certain housing costs.
- A standard amount of £17 a week for disability related expenditure.
How much you pay towards your care
The amount calculated is the income you have which can pay towards your support. This is called your maximum ability to pay.
In some cases, your maximum ability to pay will be zero - which means that you will not have to pay anything towards the cost of your support
If you do have to pay, we will charge you whichever is less out of the following amounts:
- your maximum ability to pay figure - all of the income you have available to pay towards your support
- the total cost of your care and support - the value of your personal budget
If you are assessed as able to pay the total cost of your care then you may be asked to pay for your care directly to the provider.