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Income options. - Carers UK Forum

Income options.

All about money
Hi there,

My family and I have recently made the decision that I will become my grandmother's full time carer. She is 90 years old and so far has had carer's visit three times a day. This was working until recently when she had a fall after being left alone for only 10 minutes and it has reached the point where she needs either someone with her all the time or to go into a care home, which we all promised would never happen.

I am really happy to be able to do this for her. My only concerns are money wise really. I am currently in Scotland, so I have just handed in my notice and will be moving down to England in the next couple of weeks.

I had just made the decision to take an open university degree, which would be funded by saas in Scotland, but I will lose this in England. I also have debts/outgoings of about £250/month without student fees.

The plan is for me to live with her, as this will allow me to be with her almost constantly and hopefully mean she won't have anymore falls. We have read about Direct Payments but I am wondering if being her Granddaughter this will effect my eligibility to be employed by her as her carer, especially if I intend to be her live in carer (although, this has been decided on due to her needs).

Next problem is funding for my OU degree. This is very important to me but I do not think I will be able to afford the 1.4K per year fees. Is there any funding options for carers? would this affect my right to carer's allowance if we couldn't go down the direct payments route?

If anybody has knowledge about these issues I would very much appreciate any advice you can give!

Hi Jennifer,
Welcome to the forum. At the top of this page you will find a "Help and Advice" section. You will find lots of basic stuff about being a carer. I don't want to overwhelm you, so would suggest that you initially find out more about about Attendance Allowance, which your grandmother should be receiving. In turn, you will then be entitled to Carers Allowance. Is there anyone in the family dealing with your grandmother's money? If not, it would be a good idea for them to draw together all the relevant information about her finances. She would only be eligible for direct payments if she had an income of under, very roughly, £23,000 - and Social Services will want full details of all savings, income, and outgoings before paying anything. If finances allow, let the three carers a day come in three times a day for a while, so you can see what they do, and how they do it. You cannot cope 24/7 without a break, especially studying as well, so consider keeping on at least one care visit a day, long term. Last, but not least, it is important to acknowledge that, with the best will in the world, your grandmother's needs may get to the point that she needs more care than you can provide. Think about saying you are moving in so she can "stay home as long as possible". My own mum had to move into a nursing home this year. It wasn't what either of us wanted, but sadly it became the only option left. There are lots of people here caring for elderly relatives, feel free to ask "How/Where do you...?" whenever you want.
Thanks bowlingbun,

Good news is I have 7 yrs in health care in various roles, so I should be able to pick up her care quite easily. But that is good advice on keeping a carer on so that I have a little time off.

We just have no idea where to begin money wise. We have read the online help pages but we have some specific questions and seen as it is xmas there has been very few people available to give the advice.

It says that full time students are not available for carer's allowance. I do not know if this applies to distance learning. I was intending to complete it in the three years (full time) and work full time as well.

With the direct payments it says that they wouldn't usually accept an immediate family member - does granddaughter come into that category? and then it goes on to say that it can't be paid if I was living with her. Well, I am the only person in my family who has experience in care and we really feel that she needs someone living with her.

If I am not eligible for carers allowance and they deem me not eligible to be employed by direct payments then I am kind of stumped on what I am supposed to live off of and how I am supposed to fund my course!

Seems ridiculously complicated and so much red tape when carers are doing the government a huge service!
Yes, it's a minefield. My son with learning difficulties lives alone in a flat, with carers supporting him, plus day services. He is paid a lot of Direct Payments, but practically speaking, only I can manage the DP's for him. So when he comes home for Christmas, as the "fund manager" I can't pay myself. I can pay Tom, Dick or Harry, but not the one person in the world he wants to care for him most of all, his mum! Some authorities are more helpful than others. Whether or not you are a "full time" student depends on the hours you study (I did a degree part time but kept CA, 20 years ago).
You can't really make any final decisions until your grandmother's financial situation is established, beyond question. If she doesn't have much in the way of savings, then the rest of the family need to work out how they are going to fund you caring for her. I hate dealing with money, especially where other family members are concerned, but live in care is VERY expensive, at least in my area. Mum was quoted about £800 a week for basic care, more for awake night care. Do they realise the enormity of their promise to keep her out of residential care?
At the moment, it is her risk of falling that is the biggest problem. She can still get around a bit with a walking frame indoors. But she forgets to use it and her memory is bad enough that sometimes she will try walking outside. After her last fall she needs help with going to the toilet as she has really hurt her shoulder. So we just need someone there to make sure she wont get up and wander.

If her mobility gets worse and she needs maybe hoists or stand aids then we might have to reconsider residential care. But as you said in the previous post we want to stall resorting to care homes until it is absolutely essential.

My aunt deals with all her money. I suppose we will just have to wait until next week until we can start making the official phone calls and such. I just hate not knowing and the uncertainty of it all and so many advice lines being closed at this time of year. Cannot be helped but annoying all the same.

That is terrible that you can't pay your wife! I don't see why there has to be so much red tape. Surely if a family member is qualified and able they deserve to get paid like any other person would!
Do you know the reason for the falls? Now is the time to explain the situation to aunt, and ask for details of gran's finances. If she is reluctant, remember the main question is "Does gran have over £20,000 of assets in total, including shares, all bank accounts etc.?" (I use the figure of £20,000, although I think in my County it is £23,000. I don't know who sets the exact figure, government or LA.)
gov.uk direct payments

loads of info on Poole site but check out your own LA
http://www.poole.gov.uk/health-and-soci ... ts-scheme/
curretn limit £23250
http://www.poole.gov.uk/health-and-soci ... ributions/
You might be able to argue that you are still legally a continuous resident in Scotland as long as you are only helping out on a 'temporary' basis down south through a family crisis and keep an address up here. I would check the residency criteria. And apply from Scotland, obviously. It is only temporary isn't it? (hint hint!) :lol:
Scally, you are brilliant!! A simple soul like me never thought about that for a minute, but it's so true.
Well, my guess is that the Scottish Government criteria are based on historical residency, not future residence, but that's just a hunch.
Never assume anything, always check the fine print, thats my New Year resolution; I must have lost a small fortune in the past by not knowing my rights, which probably explains why I am so keen now to encourage everyone else not to make the same mistakes..... :ugeek: