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Ask the Experts: post your Qs on carers' rights & benefits - Page 8 - Carers UK Forum

Ask the Experts: post your Qs on carers' rights & benefits

Tell us a bit about yourself here.
82 posts
Londonbound wrote:
Mon Nov 18, 2019 11:54 pm
I am looking after my caree suffering from physical and mental illness, last year they got to the point of not being able to cope anymore and took an overdose.
I went down to A&E sat with them eventually they saw the crisis team who listened for about 10 minutes then handed my caree some leaflets about councelling and said they could go home. No treatment or follow up appointment was ever arranged.
I have talked to mental health services who say that unpaid carer support is only available to carers of services users of the mental health trust.
So if my caree was attending treatment or was sectioned by mental health services I would be entitled to help.
So who should be providing help and support as that's what my caree needs, long term health problems, depressed anxious, stuck at home. My caree has had a needs assessment and basically been refused all help, my caree can wash and dress themselves and that is the criteria. Social Services have raised the bar so high so that only the very severely disabled get help.
So who should be providing the help? my caree needs social services, help going out and about, help with transport, help seeing friends, socialising, all of which the Care Act mention.

But the mental health problems are causing the needs, scared to go out on their own, has panic attacks.

I have recently learned my caree has personality disorder, diagnosed years ago but little treatment given.

The councelling place has said, we don't deal with personality disorder, your caree needs to see Mental health services, but my caree has done, no help supplied.
What are my carees rights in this situation, needs but being refused personality disorder treatment, being misdirected to sources of support.
And what are my rights as an unpaid carer looking after my caree with multiple health issues and personality disorder.
As stated Mental health services refuse any kind of support to me, but I am looking after someone who is mentally ill.
Social services have refused both of us any kind of help and support, but this is a vulnerable person living in the community with no support.
Can Social Services force Mental health services to give treatment and support to my caree, there is a wellbeing duty through the Care Act and Mental Health Services surely as well have dutys to keep people mentally well?

The only option seems to be paying for private therapy which does not seem viable, is there any way of getting a grant to pay for private therapy?
What are the rights of someone with personality disorder to get treatment which in turn will give the carer support, is there personality disorder guidance that Mental health services must follow?

Many thanks for your message.

My first piece of advice would be to link up with an organisation called Rethink Mental Illness who are a charity that are able to provide specialist advice to those living with mental health issues and their carers:
https://www.rethink.org/aboutus/what-we ... n-service/

They can advise on the NICE guidelines regarding the treatment options for specific conditions and can also advise on the role of specialist mental health teams operating via the NHS. They also have a carers hub, which can be accessed here:
https://www.rethink.org/advice-and-info ... arers-hub/

Regarding the support that is available via social services, you should be aware that you are entitled to a carers assessment to investigate whether you need any extra support in your caring role – you can read more about this here:
https://www.carersuk.org/help-and-advic ... assessment

This factsheet also includes information on the eligibility criteria for needs assessments as well as carers assessments, so if you or the person you care for is found ineligible for support via social services (but the eligibility criteria in the factsheet indicate that you should qualify), then you may want consider challenging the local authority decision. You are also correct that the local authority must consider promoting wellbeing in applying the eligibility criteria. Your options for challenging the local authority are outlined below:

1. Complain to the local authority by writing a letter
Irwin Mitchell Solicitors have created this letter template for anyone to use for free. You should explain in your letter how the decision will affect you and why you don't think it's right. You can also ask for an explanation of how the decision has been made. More advice about writing your letter is provided by the Citizens Advice website. You should send your letter to the Director of Adults Services at your local authority.

2. Complain to the Local Government Ombudsman
If you are not happy with the response to your complaint, you can then complain to the Local Government Ombudsman (LGO). The LGO investigates complaints where the council may have made the decision in the wrong way. They can recommend what the council can do to make up for their decision. You can find more information about this on the LGO website.
3. Ask a solicitor for help
A solicitor can tell you if a judicial review may be possible. A judicial review is the way that people can challenge the lawfulness of a decision made by a public body such as a local authority. A judge will look at how the decision was made. More information about judicial reviews. To find a local solicitor who can help with social care issues, search the justice website and tick the Community Care box. Find out if you qualify for legal aid to fund your use of a solicitor on the gov.uk website.
4. Contact your MP to alert them to the problem you are having
Your MP has an interest in how the local authority enacts UK government laws such as the Care Act, and can intervene on your behalf as his or her constituent. You can find your MP’s contact details on the Parliament website.

In case it doesn't show, below are the hyperlinks for some of the above:
Find your MP’s contact details on the Parliament website: https://www.mencap.org.uk/advice-and-su ... ocial-care
More information about judicial reviews: https://www.judiciary.gov.uk/you-and-th ... al-review/
To find a local solicitor who can help with social care issues, search the justice website: http://find-legal-advice.justice.gov.uk/
Find out if you qualify for legal aid to fund your use of a solicitor on the gov.uk website: https://www.gov.uk/check-legal-aid.
You can find more information about this on the LGO website: http://lgo.org.uk/
More advice about writing your letter is provided by the Citizens Advice website: https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/healt ... omplaints/
Irwin Mitchell Solicitors have created this letter template to complain to the local authority:*
http://www.irwinmitchell.com/medialibrary/im com/home/documents/formal_complaint_under_councils_complaints_procedure.doc
*You will need to copy and paste the above link into a new Internet Browser tab
bowlingbun wrote:
Tue Nov 19, 2019 11:53 am
Thanks Danny, but I need to know where it actually says this?

You can read all the repeals and revocations here:
https://www.gov.uk/government/publicati ... nce#AnnexI

Best wishes

I need some help I was a carer foe my grandmother until 2018 I did work part time until I now unable to work I need to claim contribution based ESA and pip
I am not sure if I can get the ESA as I haven't worked 26 weeks in tax years 2016/2017 and 2017/2018 so am I entitled to claim this as the info I have read is unclear as it said if claimed carers allowance I can get it so I am confused please help
Hello everyone. Thanks so much for contributing to this thread and sending your questions. We hope the information provided was useful. The Advisers will post their answers to the last few outstanding unanswered questions, but after this, the Q&A will come to an end and this thread will be locked.

If anyone has a question about their caring situation, you can always post it in one of the relevant sections on this forum. Alternatively, our team of advisers can guide you to the best support. You can contact email them at advice@carersuk.org or call 0808 808 7777.
Cheers Lizzie.

Regards to Danny and Suzette ... I trust that they appreciate OUR efforts on the forum as well ... occasionally , going way beyond the CUK remit in order to reflect
the true reality out there ... many from actual first hand experience.

CUK's unofficial , second , advice team ... and ... open all hours ?

None of us are legally trained , either ... nor paid.

The Forum ... and the forum members who contribute ... the most underutilized asset in CUK's diminishing arsenal ?
Heather_1908 wrote:
Mon Nov 18, 2019 7:46 pm
My elderly father has a concessionary travel pass with Companion but due to his ill health he rarely leaves the house. i do most of his shopping and get what he needs, eg pick up medications,

is there any plans to enable free bus travel to carers ?
Hi there, thank you for posting this question for us.

At present we are not aware of any plans for a bus pass for carers when they are not with the person they care for.

You may be able to get some help with your transport cost via having a carer’s assessment from your father’s local authority.
A Carers assessment should look at:

• How you feel about your caring role;

• Whether you are coping with the level of care you are providing now and how this might change in the future;

• What help you need to be able to carry on providing care;

• Your health, physical, mental and emotional needs and wellbeing;

• Work, study, training and leisure interests, including social activities and relationships;

• What happens in an emergency.

Here are some examples of the help that could be available following a carer’s assessment:

Help given to the cared for person to provide respite to the carer and/or:

• a Carer’s Grant

• a short holiday for you to enable the carer to have time to themselves

• help with taxi fares/transport costs

• help with driving lessons if driving was central to the caring role

Please see here for some information on our website: https://www.carersuk.org/help-and-advic ... nd-support

You may find it helpful to contact a local carers centre, and many of these now carry out the carers assessments on behalf of the council, and often have other forms of support. Some have their own “carers grants” or “carer’s direct payments”. They would also be able to let you know if there were any transport concessions in your area
Our website has a local carer’s centre search: http://www.carersuk.org/help-and-advice ... al-support as does The Carer’s Trust website: http://www.carers.org/carers-services/f ... al-service

I hope this helps but please get back in touch with any questions.

Kindest regards

Free public transport for carers ?

Look no further :

https://www.carersuk.org/forum/news-and ... ndon-28026

( 27,197 reads as I type ... what does that tell CUK ? )

CUK's reaction ?

Hi Chris,

I have requested that our policy team take a look at the companion travel issue in the New Year and I passed this request on last week when this thread first started. Larger issues like travel etc can sometimes take a lot of behind the scenes work to begin to action so the response may not be immediate. We'll keep the forum updated as and when as to whether this issue moves forwards in the New Year.

Many thanks

22 December 2016 ... page 3 of the above thread.

Since then ?

Complete silence ... another no show in their 2019 general election manifesto.

( Needless to add , free public transport would put more monies into more carers pockets / purses than ANY other scheme currently running ... especially at the poorer end !

800,000 odd claim CA ... Fairer for Carers would produce £ 7 odd more per week ... less decrease in other benefits paid ... low millions use public transport ? )
Hi I have a friend who get care allowance for her mum she just found out yesterday that her mother cant get it now so allowance as stopped she was only getting £60.00 a week to manage and she is quite a ill person she is tearing her hair out with worry as she does not feel she is well enough for a full time job
Joan, to qualify for Carers Allowance you must be caring for someone with Attendance Allowance, Disability Living Allowance or PIP, Personal Independence Payment. If one of these has stopped, then your friend needs to make sure mum appeals WITHIN THE TIME FRAME GIVEN. Over 50% of appeals are successful. Can I suggest your friend joins the forum herself?
I have contacted Rethink but very little was sorted out, there is no Rethink in my area, I have heard Rethink can provide Advocacy but they didn't.
I have spoken to a few other organisations who in turn have referred me to other organisations miles and miles away but no one can provide local help, advocacy attending meetings, helping write letters etc.
I have had a look at the Rethink Carers Hub, I need these specific answers to my questions, but no one can advice.
I spoke to the councelling organisation my caree was referred to who have said in cases of personality disorder firstly theres a long waiting list and there would be a limited amount of sessions provided by the NHS which does not resolve the issue, really the solution is to pay for long term private therapy if they can scrape the money together, they can't.
My caree needs a full package of support considering all aspects of their life, but as said before on this forum, Social Services just don't offer help outside the home, they just don't, I know that for a fact.
Social Services agree that my caree needs help but they simply don't offer the service, it has been cut so cannot and will not be provided.

A carers assessment I have considered but again have to wait for months and again there is no support available, providing me with support?
Its my caree that needs the support not me, providing my caree with no support will just end up with them going back to A&E.
Under the Crisis concordat agreed by a number of organisations, appropriate referrals have to be made to stop the same thing happening again.
And there should be prevention of crisis, people get the right help and support and don't reach crisis point.
My caree is getting no support from any source.

I have gone through Social Services complaints and the ombudsman, I just don't have the time and energy to go through complaints again.
I have gone through mental health services complaints and just found so many errors I gave up , I am not willing to do the back and forth correcting the complaints officers errors.
Is there a quick complaints route? I thought the government was supposed to be improving and speeding up complaints precedures, faster resolution?

Mental health services have made it clear, if my caree is accepted for treatment then I the unpaid care get help and support, that is the rules and that is that.

I have been refused advocacy through the Care Act, so first of all I would need an advocate to help me complain about the advocacy service.
Again there is a waiting list for advocacy, so I would have to wait, how long they couldn't tell me.
However I have been told I am ineligible for Care Act Advocacy.
I am going through the complaints procedure about my previous caree, so to sort out my other caree, can this be added to the complaint or a second complaint?

Again I need someone to help with the Social Services complaints procedure but have been refused advocacy.
I have contacted a solicitor previously and the MP , not a lot has been done.

My caree can barely get out of bed some days and needs a lot of help and support but as stated before most services that my caree needs have been cut and are just not provided- cleaning, shopping, disabled transport, you are just told to pay for it yourselfs.

And both the NHS and Social services should be helping and supporting carers , both services know the situation but have refused all help and support to caree and carer.
And in the situation of my caree having a needs assessment, shouldn't I have been offered a carers assessment under the Care Act?

I feel there is an awful lot of wrong doing here, people who should be thinking about disabled peoples welfare but are doing absolutely nothing.
Social Services are ignoring the law, Mental health services are ignoring NHS guidance, I was able to access Mental health services but as my caree was not a service user no unpaid carer help and support could be provided.
But my mental health problems were being made worse because of the lack of unpaid carer support which is why I was referred to mental health services in the first place.

Going through complaints will take months, contacting a solicitor that will take months or years to sort out.
I am still grieving my friend I need more help and support, Social Services have provided none.
82 posts