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Carers Assessment and Council Tax ! - Carers UK Forum

Carers Assessment and Council Tax !

All about money
I had a Carers Assessment last year with the Social Worker I have been allocated but I felt it was a complete waste of time. She didn't seem to know anything about what I could be entitled to or could have access to as a carer although she did say I needed support !
I asked her several questions which she couldn't answer (and still hasn't bothered to look into for me !) She just kept saying 'It's all very new this and only just started in April !'

One of the things I asked her was if she knew if there was any chance I could apply for a reduction with the Council Tax bill. She didn't have a clue ! The only thing I got from the meeting was that she didn't know the answers to my questions and then she gave me a phone number for the Alzheimer's Society !!!

I then went to the Council Tax office. I explained my situation that I lived with mum in her house and due to mum losing the concept of money last year I now pay all of her household bills (and for everything else !) and was there any possibility of getting a reduction in the bill with mum having a diagnosis of Alzheimer's.
If it was my house it sounded as though it would be possible but because it's mums house it seems more difficult. It seems the only way for me to get anywhere with anything is if I let them do another Capacity Test on mum and for them to tell her she has 'failed' the test therefore taking away the bit of independence / capacity she still has and I'm afraid at the moment I'm not prepared to do that !

Hope there is someone out there that can give me some suggestions
Hi Gillian

Your Mum should be disregarded for Council Tax on the basis of "severe mental impairment"; have a look at here https://www.alzheimers.org.uk/site/scri ... mentID=137 (factsheet from The Alzheimer's Society). Normally the Council should accept a letter from her GP confirming her dementia diagnosis.

If it's only you and Mum in the house and Mum gets the disregard then you can also claim the 25% 'single' person's discount.
Hi ,
If it is just you and your mum, your mum can be disregarded as Severely Mental Impaired ( a horrible term) but you can claim a carer disregardson you are also disregarded as a person for CTAX and so the liability for the house hold is just 50% (the property element).
This only applies if there are just the 2 adults in the household. If there were 3 adults and 2 disregarded then the bill would be 75% which would be 50% for the property and 25% for the adult who wasn't disregarded.
Double disregards tend to get unclaimed because people don't know the rules .
Whether or not your mum's gp would sign the SMI form without a memory clinic diagnosis is really hit and miss but worth speaking to your GP about and explain that you don't want to cause mum further distress.
Hi again Gillian
I'm not sure whether the council tax aspect of caring would be in the SW area of expertise. I don't qualify for anything, being retired, and Mum has not had any kind of 'test', so I've never asked Mum's SW those sort of questions. They are more concerned, from the caring for the elderly point of view, in assessing the amount of care your Mum needs and sorting out who is going to do that and who pays.
I think an e-mail to the help line here might get you some answers. If Mum has already been confirmed as suffering from Dementia, I don't see why she should be re-assessed, unless there are differing amounts of reduction depending on severity and your Mum may have deteriorated since her diagnosis. If BB picks up on your post, she may be able to tell you more. (Oh, just seen the other posts, so you have some answers).
I think a new assessment might be worth the trouble. Either the SW will have learnt her job or you'll get a different one.
Thank you.

It's amazing that I only got the courage to write my first post yesterday and already you have all made me feel so welcome and supported.

I will definitely look at the suggested website and I will try and get to the Council Tax office again and talk to someone now I have some ideas about what I need to talk to them about. Or maybe I will give them a ring as I have very little time to do these things with working full time then needing to get straight home to be with mum !

I'm still confused about what the idea is of me having a Social Worker as well as mum. After my Carers Assessment she said I do need support and me seeing her was separate from the work she would be doing for mum and that she was there to help me. At the time I was assessed I was very emotional as I was suffering from bouts of depression caused by the build up of mums condition, her admittance to hospital and her diagnosis which was difficult for me to talk about but I did tell her. She said not to worry as there were things she could do to support me but I'm still waiting to find out what they are !
Hi Gillian, I've had a few people like her who really haven't got a clue!!
Can I suggest that you Google Council Tax Exemption.gov.uk before going back to the Council?
My son has severe learning difficulties, lives alone, so qualifies for exemption. That's not a 50% discount, he pays nothing. That's the difference between a discount and an exemption.
As I understand it, if you are a carer, under certain circumstances listed on the .gov site, you too are exempt. Council Tax payable, nothing. (I'm not a paid professional, just someone who has had a total of 10, yes 10, family carees in the last 40 years, but only five at any one time!!!!)
I know that councils are now allowed to vary some rules, but I'm fairly certain that does not give them any right to change these exemption rules above. Sadly, not everyone knows the rules as well as they should, but if you go armed with a download from the .gov.uk site, having highlighted the bits which are relevant to you, it should make things an awful lot easier. Just ask them to explain why you can't have the exemption. Stress that it's an EXEMPTION not a discount.
Hi Gillian
The SW assessment for you, ie the Carer's assessment, is to see what YOU need to enable you to continue caring for Mum.
Imagine someone caring 24 hrs a day.
1) The social worker says that the parent (in this imaginary case) needs help to get up, to be fed and toileted twice a day and needs to be helped to bed. That's one lot of carers visiting.
2) However the adult caring for this parent needs to get out once in a while, or needs a sitter so they can go to a night class or to go visit another relative, or even get to sleep occasionally and so on. That's more carer time needed.
The Needs assessment deals with 1, what Mum needs so that she can live at home.
The Carer's assessment deals with 2. What YOU need so you can care for Mum while she lives at home without ending up in hospital yourself through sheer exhaustion at the very least.
Hope that helps.
If you live alone and are SMI, then you get full exemption =no CTAX,
If you are SMI and live with a carer but no one else then the rules only allow for a double disregard- both people are disregarded in their own right so only the 50% property element is payable but no exemption- bizarre I know. This is a double disregard discount (not exemption)
If there are disregards SMI plus carer plus one only other person who is not disregarded then you get a 25% discount.
If there is a SMI plus a carer Plus 2, 3, 4 or any other number upwards in property there is no discount as at least 2 adults int eh property are not disregarded.
Sorry to be picky but I wallowed for 20 years in CTAX offices. :lol:
I didn't have a clue about council tax exemption until our friend on here BB alerted me ....my Mum was diagnosed with Vascular Dementia back in 2007 when my Dad was still with us and severely disabled post brain bleed.....they were still paying council tax .........after his death in 2013 and I had no choice but to sort out Mums finances BB alerted me to this fact ......I applied and they immediately made Mum exempt from council tax however, they would not back date it to diagnosis date even though the doc signed a form to this effect....it was still a huge relief that she didn't have to pay because her finances decreased substantially after Dad passed xx
Hi Henrietta, no need to apologise, it's me that's apologising for giving misleading information. Ever since M moved into his flat nine years ago, I've understood, apparently wrongly, that he didn't pay anything at all because of his severe mental impairment. Now it's me that's puzzled!