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DIRECT PAYMENTS RULES -Carers UK Forum

DIRECT PAYMENTS RULES

All about money
hi there.. I receive direct payments to buy in care for my mother.. recently i was asked by health professional " who owns the house ?" It is my mother's house but was put into my name many years ago.. to avoid future distress and confrontation concerning members of the family who have never offered any support or care.. but have received Monetary gifts..
What is my legal situation with regards to direct payments ? I do not want to put my future security in jeapordy Is the house taken into account if it is in my name? I could have sold the property years ago but did not do so because of duty and loyalty to my mother. .any replies?
You administer the direct payments, but they are not your income. The house doesn't belong to your mum, who is the only person who could be penalised financially by having assets: you are absolutely in the clear. Tell them you own the house, tell them nothing else, it is none of their business as it will not affect your own Carers Allowance (if you get CA or other benefits, that is) .
By the way, well done you for getting the house transferred to your name - I only wish more carers had the wit and wisdom to do this because many are left homeless. :P
Scally is right. Sometimes, social workers aren't very familiar with laws, especially contract law, and money matters. My work and studies mean I'm very familiar with both! As a result, I've reclaimed £8,000 on mum's behalf. The care mum receives from social services is subject to a means assessment, which looks at mum's income and assets only. Even if you were a multi millionaire, it wouldn't matter as long as mum had under their threshold, roughly £16,000 for domiciliary care, or the direct payments equivalent. There should have been a formal financial assessment, at the end you should have been given a statement of exactly how much mum had to pay, and why. If you and mum have a joint account, then only half that money counts as your mum's the other half is counted as yours. To anyone with a frail elderly relative, this is a very easy way of reducing liability for care fees, but it must be done at least 6 months beforehand, to avoid being accused of "deprivation of capital".
The house doesn't belong to your mum, who is the only person who could be penalised financially by having assets
Having been awarded 4 hrs a week of direct payments earlier this year, I recently received a financial assessment form asking about my income & property that I own. My social worker informed me that as of July this year, carers are to be financially assessed for DP's.

I have a handout she gave me which outlines the savings threshold - if you have over £23,250 of savings you pay for any external care you need which would previously have been covered by DP.

It says:
"The actual amount you pay will depend on your financial assessment. The financial assessment determines your net disposable income by adding the figure calculated from your savings and investments to all other sources of income such as pensions and other benefits. We then make allowance for your daily living costs and any relevant expenses relating to your disability. The net figure is your weekly charge. In cases where your allowances and expenses equal or exceed your income then you will not contribute towards your Independent Personal Budget."

The SW said something about a consultation which resulted in carers saying they wanted to be treated the same as their carees and this is why it's being brought in. Personally I find that very hard to believe - surely this is just a way of cutting council budgets?
This is not my area but surely something has gone wrong? The financial assessment relates only to the caree, and the direct payments are only for the caree. Have you confirmed this with the helpline at Carers UK? It sounds as if the social worker doesn't know what she's talking about - wouldn't be the first time.
Surely the care provided is for the caree to stzy safe when you are "not available to care"? You don't need any services from the LA due to your own problems?
No, I don't need any LA help myself. The DP's were awarded to me, as a carer, as a result of my needs assessment. The organisation who deals with administering the DP's when they're first set up told me they could be used to pay for extra care for my caree when I need a break, or to pay for services such as gardening etc.

I was shocked when I got the financial assessment through as I understood they weren't means tested for carers, only for carees. But the SW insisted that this new rule has been rolled out since July. She's about as effective as a chocolate teapot & I don't trust she knows the system at all but I called the finance office of my LA and they confirmed that I need to complete the form if I wanted to be considered for future DP's (I think a lot of people who know they won't qualify won't bother filling in the form & they'll just relinquish their DP's).

This might tie in with why Julia was asked if she owns the house or not? I haven't confirmed this with CarersUK yet - tbh, my will to navigate through the SS system is ebbing away & I'm in the fortunate position of not being in financial difficulty yet. I've got a list of organisations I want to make complaints about for various episodes of incompitance but it's so time & energy consuming!
So has the caree had her own recent needs assessment? Sounds like they are trying to fiddle things. It's your caree who needs these, NOT you. You cannot be forced to care at all.
The caree is my Dad, he's had a needs assessment but it was pretty perfunctory because he's self funding. Never the less, the SW made it clear what SS could offer, even if we are paying for it.

My understanding was that the DP was being awarded to me to help in my caring role. No-one is forcing me to care, I took on the role willingly after my Mum passed away in Feb and felt it would be too traumatic for Dad to have carers so soon after. My partner & I moved in with Dad but we have just employed 2 carers privately to allow me to return to work. I was planning on using the DP's to pay for extra hours when I want to socialise/go to the gym etc. I'm suddenly very confused about the whole business!

Julie, apologies for hijacking your post...
Those that have added to this topic may be interested in this recent research by CarersTrust

http://www.carers.org/news/charging-car ... port-wrong

http://www.carers.org/impact-charges-carers

Report in full pdf
http://www.carers.org/sites/default/fil ... port_0.pdf

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