My brothers going in a home and "above" £23,250

Share information, support and advice on all aspects of caring.
108 posts
Hello.

I am 56 and my brother who is mentally handicapped, and 60 yeas old is due to go in to a home in a few weeks. He suffers epilepsy too, among with eating problems, walking etc.

My brother is currently on ESA (£125.05 per week) he also gets PIP enhanced rate (£564.40 per month) £82.30 for daily living needs, and £57.45 for hep with MOBILITY needs.

Ive been his Carer for 10 years since my father passed away. I'm on ESA and am in the support group.

I control all the money in my bank account, and his and my money have accrued over the years and amount to about £26,850. I will need to take a financial assessment out soon, and only received it yesterday (the leaflet my social worker gave me)

What I'd like to know is, how much of this money i have, which includes me and my brothers benefits will i have to contribute to the care home? As it says if you have £23,250 you will have to pay the full cost of care. All mine and my brothers benefits are in the same account, but my brother, if worked out would be less than £23,250, as my money is "mixed in: with it too. For example, what kind of benefits are/are not disregarded, will i have to use MY MONEY/BENEFITS in the bank to contribute too?

I hope someone can help me as I'm new to the forum and confused so what.

PS: I'm also on DLA.

Tony
Hello Tony and welcome to the forum.

I suggest that you contact the Carers UK Adviceline team as they are the experts on all matters related to caring and benefits. They will be able to explain the ruling to you and give you confidential advice based on your and your brother's circumstances.
Need expert advice? You can talk to the Carers UK Adviceline five days a week, no matter where you are in the UK or how complex your query is. We do benefits checks and advise on financial and practical matters related to caring.

Freephone: 0808 808 7777
email: advice@carersuk.org
Open Monday to Friday, 10am to 4pm

The Carers UK Adviceline also includes a listening service, there for you to talk through your caring situation with a trained volunteer who understands what you are going through. Available Mondays and Tuesdays, from 9am to 7pm.

If you can’t get through on the phones (lines are often oversubscribed) then send them an email, they’ll usually get back to you within 3-5 working days.
Thank you susieQ

I will email/phone at the earliest opportunity.


Tony.

PS: would a copy of my post above be ok/sufficient?
Yes Tony - just copy 'n paste it into an email - if they need further information they will get back to you :)
First of, definitely get in touch with Carers UK team of experts!

That said, from what I've learnt here on the forum in my time, my own understanding is that the £23,500 limit only applies to the INDIVIDUAL'S OWN MONEY....not to 'family money' so to speak.

So, for example, if a married couple jointly own a house together, or have a joint savings account, the value is simply 'halved' and then if the half-sum is above the £23,500, then that triggers self funding (until it's been spent to the £23,500 level to start triggering LA-funding.)

If you have been 'mixing in' your brother's monies into your own bank account, for the purpose of easier administration, then I think I would do the following straight away.

Dig out as many old bank statements that show the complete track of 'money in money out' of the account, so that you can demonstrate how much of the money 'going in' is from YOUR earnings etc, and how much from your brother's PIP etc etc.

Although the two streams of income have been merged into the account, their individual sources should be traceable, and then SEPARATE totals can be worked out mathematically, for each of you. Only your brother's total should be taken into account to assess whether he's over that £23,500 limit.

I would say that is relatively straightforward to do (if a bit tedious!)

However, what might be trickier is to work out and identify how much of that money has been spent on HIM - eg, for food, clothing, entertainment, his share of utility bills etc (ie, his living expenses). That then has to be deducted from his income stream (ie, PIP etc). The overall balance - ie, his Pip etc minus his living expenses - will represent his 'surplus' - ie, savings - ie, if he's been getting more money in than he has spent, then he'll have slowly accumulated some savings which could be fairly said to be 'his money' (as in, it isn't yours!), and I would think that surely only that would be taken into account when assessing whether he has a surplus/savings that reach to the £23,500 limit.

If you wanted, maybe you could open a second account, which is 'yours' in that you open it, and it (I assume) has to be in your name, (can be at the same bank), and then swap both his PIP etc payments directly into it (ie, get them now paid into 'his' bank account), and use that bank account for his living expenses, AND put in any genuine 'savings' (past income minus past living expenses) that he may have accumulated over the years.

A separate bank account 'for him' would make things easier for the local authorities to view.

It is tricky, though, isn't it, when you are administering someone else's money! In my own situation, my MIL with dementia is currently spending her way down through the value of her flat which was sold some years ago, to pay her care home fees. BUT, she became in need of care beyond her ability to grant anyone Power of Attorney, so my arrangement is 'informal.' She managed to be sufficiently 'OK' to open a joint bank account with me, and so I can now sign cheques that pay her care home fees from her money.

Except that, because officially it is a joint bank account, if I go under a bus tomorrow, HALF of what's in there (not a great deal any more, sigh....) would be counted as 'mine' even though it's actually all hers. Whatever happens, I have to stay not-under-a-bus until it's all gone, and she is handed over to local authority funding!!!!

it's not ideal, far from it, but it was the only practical option at the time.

Hope your conversation with the Carers UK team goes well, and you can get this sorted for the LA to be happy with the separation of funds. One thing is absolute - YOU do NOT pay for your brother, IF his OWN money is less than £23,500. Be prepared for the LA to try and wriggle out of it by any means possible!!!!!!

Good luck, Jenny
When I was made "appointee" for my son, I was told that I needed to set up a separate bank account for his money. However, when I've said this on the forum in the past, apparently some people were either not given the information, or chose to ignore it. None of us know what will happen in the future, and it's really important that we "future proof" our relatives as much as possible.
From now on, it's absolutely vital that all your brother's money goes into another account. However, it must be an account in your name, OR JOINT NAMES. So the "appointee" account is in joint names, so that if I die first all that money is automatically my son's.
With a normal joint account, with both names, the LA has to treat the money as jointly and equally owned, according to the rules. My mum and I had a joint account, into which all her DLA was paid. She said as I'd helped her claim the benefit, when she died it was all to be mine. If I wanted to, it was OK for me to help myself to it at any time. I well remember the LA assessor saying in that case he could only count half as being mum's, and so as a result she got a lot of help from the LA rather than pay the full amount.
Every situation is different, definitely ring the CUK helpline asap, but I thought if I told you what happened to mum, it might help.
Thank you Jenny and bowlingbun for your replies.

I have a bank account at Lloyds, and all the money is put into their via my name. I have about £20,400 in my classic account, and £5,800 in the "online saver" account, its been like this for a a few years now, fluctuating a bit.

I rang my social worker up this afternoon, who gave me the assessment leaflet to read, and she told me that if all the money is in my account, and my brothers is in there too, then during the assessment, the money taken as capital will be "halved", so that would be like £13,100 each. The social worker told me though, however, to wait for the financial assessment to sort things out. She, however, reassured me that i wont have to fund all this money for my brothers home, but ill keep you posted.

Tony.
That's good, if it's halved then that means the LA will pay the lions share. My son with SLD was in residential care for a few years, his only income was benefit based. (I'll use the benefit names which applied at the time). If you are in a LA funded placement, then Income Support is no longer payable, if I remember rightly, neither was DLA Care. He had about £25 left for "personal items" BUT they could not take DLA Mobility into consideration. I was once bullied by someone at the home who wanted the mobility allowance "to help pay for our minibus" but this is unlawful. IF they take your brother out, they should charge mileage. You should keep your appointeeship. Are you intending to have your brother home at all? If so, then DLA Care was payable for my son, for all days at home - these are referred to as "Boarder Payments". Remarkably SIMPLE one page form!!! The same applies to Carers Allowance. If you have him home from Friday to Monday that counts as TWO WEEKS, not one, as the CA week ends on Saturday night. The CUK helpline have full details, as they were the ones who explained how to claim when DWP said I wasn't eligible!!!
Most importantly of all the LA should do a full financial assessment, and give you a statement of how they arrive at their figures. They can ONLY consider your brother's income when assessing "income". You could be a millionaire and they still couldn't take this into consideration. Do NOT UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES sign to say you will pay "top ups" because that is unlawful. Some LA's forget to tell you that any top up is "voluntary"!!!
Thanks for your advice bowlingbun.

(Ramble alert!):on

As i write at 19.36, my sister and my other brother are visiting a nursing home in Derbyshire. It will be the first home we've been to look as my brother is in a residential respite centre at the moment waiting placement. They will tell me how they go on when they come back but the CQC report from 20th September 2016 seems unfavourable:

IS THE SERVICE SAFE? ----------REQUIRES IMPROVEMENT
IS THE SERVICE EFFCTIVE? ------REQUIRES IMPROVEMENT
IS THE SERVICE CARING? -------GOOD
IS THE SERVICE RESPONSIVE? ---REQUIRES IMPROVEMENT
IS THE SERVICE WELL-LED? ----REQUIRES IMPROVEMENT

I'm not sure if this is par for the course, but does seem low.

Regarding transport etc, well my brother is due to go to an appointment on Tuesday to see a dr re: his medication, and "overall" well-being. However, things aren't as they were, in that my other brother could take him to the Drs in his car accompanied by my sister (my brothers a Ambulance driver) but that they need specialist vehicles/taxis etc and a very large wheelchair to transport him.

All our family see this as totally unnecessary as my brother can, in fact, walk - disabled that he may be. They want £80.00 for taxi fees which I've paid for a 8 mile journey (derby royal). The main problem i have with my bothers situation is he's not "that bad" but they say he needs 24/7 ^NURSING^ care etc, and if I've got to be honest, i want my brother to come home, as he's only been gone 18 days, and, although difficult (incontinence/seizures etc) i was managing fine as i had perfectly good routine, day and night. My sister used to help bath him once per week (he's 16 stone so not light) and i would like him back home here with me, but the social workers/community nurse for learning disability etc say "HE NEEDS 24/7 NURSING CARE". But.... i was caring for him 18 days a ago, so why the rush to get him in a home? I'm not sure where i stand here legally

Quote from another website on a women who didn't want her mother put into a care home "

"""""(Hospitals cannot detain your mother without her permission unless she is detained on a Section II (with your permission) and then 8 weeks later by a Section III (with or without your permission). This is Law under the Mental Health Act 1983.


It's all very infusing to me but the Social worker/community nurse etc are basically saying i cant have my brother back.

Ramble off)

Sorry for going off topic, but I'm a bit in a fix. Here as there is an empty void in my house now, with my brother away.

It grieves me.....

Tony
I've just been granted Legal Aid for my son to fight the LA. Consult a legal aid solicitor asap - just google "Legal Aid" plus the name of the county in which you live.
108 posts