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direct payment - Carers UK Forum

direct payment

Share your ideas about the practical side of caring.
hello, someone mentioned direct payment to me the other day, im not sure how or if i can qualify, to be honest im not really sure what it is, i receive dla (at middle rate) for my 12 yr old son and carers allowance, can anyone help and advise me as "the system" really confuses me , and im sure they would"nt contact me to let me know if there was anything else i should receive.

any advise would be gratefully accepted

thanks dianne x
Hi Dianne

your best bet is to ring the Carers UK Adviceline - click on the link below for the details of how to contact them.

viewtopic.php?f=24&t=12838

they are very knowledgeable and will do a benefits check for you to make sure you are claiming everything you should be .
You local authority can award you (or more likely, your caree) a regular sum of money to buy in respite care or other useful services that will help you to get by. My son gets a monthly allowance, and that has to be used for things like paying a young supporter to take him bowling, playing pool, canoeing or to the movies. This gives me a break, which helps me to go out and earn some money, so everyone benefits. Its very flexible, and we have used it for holidays and sports equipment as well as swimming lessons and so on.
Beware: Direct Payments are subject to where you live. Not all of us can use DP's in the way which Scally has described (we are only allowed to use them for PA purposes, not for things like holidays or bits of computer equipment - (hubby can't do anything physical, except move his head to work the computer with his infrared device attached to his glasses), but even for that reason, to benefit hubby - we are not allowed to buy such things with our DPs.

You must check your local council and social services departments first to find out exactly WHAT you are entitled to and exactly WHICH scheme they are going to put you on. There is a thing called Individual Budgets, which allows you greater access to be allowed to buy other things like holidays.
But forgoodness' sake, please, please check it all out first and get some good advice. Then have a think about it first, before making your decision on it.
i am lookuing for chapter and verse on the legalities of INDIVIDUAL BUDGETS. as afr as i can see abt one third of claimants get them and central government are pushing them but the criteria and rules used by local authorities are anything but transparent.
df
And that DF is how they like it, clear as mud, means less folk know what they are entitled too and therefore do not claim. Half the time the professionals don't even understand the system ... and those that do, are often keeping it to themselves as they are holding on tightly to their budgets.

Cynical, but sadly true.

Melly1
Too right, Melly. I had to explain the system to a social worker who was supposed to be implementing it for someone. She only knew about the direct payment aspect, which the carers had rejected - and had been told that there was no alternative.
i am lookuing for chapter and verse on the legalities of INDIVIDUAL BUDGETS. as afr as i can see abt one third of claimants get them and central government are pushing them but the criteria and rules used by local authorities are anything but transparent.
df
Welcome to the Wild West World of unco-ordinated craziness that is British Social Policy, Donald. There is no chapter, and no verse, and if you wait for it you will be back at the end of the queue. Right now fortune favours the skilled and well-connected carer who scans the policy environment from all angles and seizes funding opportunities as they occur at local, national or even European level. Dont expect anyone to guide you through this maze, it is pretty much a free-for all: your success depends on you.
Social workers and Local Authority officials make things up as they go along.

You have a right to have information on Direct payments and personal budgets for your care. They have a duty of care to inform you of ALL your options. They claim ignorance but this is simply disingenious. You must remain polite at all times and document everything.

Direct payments can only be used for your care i.e paid professional carers, physiotherapy, etc. There are special vouchers for respite care - it cannot be used to pay family members for care.

There is a direct.gov.uk info document on this subject. Print it out and quote it to them. Record all meetings with them.

You have a right to select which option is best for you - NOT them.
Always scope for confusion and unfairness in this life. The scope of DP often reflects the age of the recipient, with greater scope for those 'non elderly' people. Exactly what monies can be used for should be explained at the time but might well vary from one place to another. But its a good option to take if you want greater control regarding care provision that Social Services would otherwise arrange for you. Puts you in the driving seat although you do have to keep proper records which is fair enough. Local authorities should promote DP for all age groups as the numbers of people 'on their books' who get DP is taken into account when a local authority's overall performance is assessed.

Robert