Getting social care support

Who is entitled to care and support

We have to provide help for your eligible needs, depending on your financial circumstances. Eligible needs are worked out after you have had an assessment.

The eligibility threshold for adults with care and support needs is based on identifying how your needs affect your ability to achieve the relevant outcomes - see below - and how this impacts then on your wellbeing.

We will consider whether your needs:

  1. arise from or are related to a physical or mental impairment or illness
  2. make you unable to achieve two or more specified outcomes
  3. as a result of being unable to meet these outcomes, there is likely to be a significant impact on your wellbeing

Your needs are only eligible where you meet all three of these conditions.

The relevant outcomes

These include:

  • managing and maintaining nutrition, such as being able to prepare and eat food and drink
  • maintaining personal hygiene, such as being able to wash themselves and their clothes
  • managing toilet needs
  • being able to dress appropriately, for example during cold weather
  • being able to move around the home safely, including accessing the home from outside
  • keeping the home sufficiently clean and safe
  • being able to develop and maintain family or other personal relationships, in order to avoid loneliness or isolation
  • accessing and engaging in work, training, education or volunteering, including physical access
  • being able to safely use necessary facilities or services in the local community including public transport and recreational facilities or services
  • carrying out any caring responsibilities, such as for a child

Other requirements

You will be entitled to help if you are eligible and live locally.

You will be entitled to care depending on five “situations”, which are:

  1. when the type of care and support you need is free
  2. if you cannot afford to pay the full cost of your care and support
  3. when you ask us to meet your needs
  4. you do not have the mental capacity, and have no one else to arrange care for you
  5. when the cap on care costs comes into force, your total care and support costs exceed the cap

What happens if we must meet your needs?

In this case, we have to help you to decide what care and support you need and want. We do this by putting together a care and support plan for you.

We will  let you know how much your care will cost and the amount you have to pay.

If you qualify for council help with costs, you'll be offered a personal budget.

You can choose to get your personal budget in 2 ways, as:

  • a direct payment into your bank account each month
  • the council organises your care and you'll get a regular bill to pay towards it.

What and when will people have to pay for their care?

While some care and support services do not cost anything, often we will charge for it.

Whether we ask you to pay some or all of the costs of the care depends on your income and savings. But, where the costs of care would mean your income goes below a certain level we will pay some of the costs. This ensures that people who have modest incomes still receive the care they need and have a minimum level of income.

You can ask us to arrange for care and support regardless of how much income you have. This means that those who do not want to arrange their own care – for whatever reason – do not have to go without. But remember, that if your income is above a set level you will still have to pay for some or all of your care - we may charge you an administration fee to do this for you.

For those who do have to pay for their care and support, you may be eligible for a “deferred payment agreement”, which means that charges are delayed and are repaid to us at a later date.

You can find out more about this on our paying for care page.

Further information