Paying for social care services in the community

You will have to pay for some social care services but others may be free or at a reduced cost, depending on your financial circumstances.

You will always be asked to pay for meals you receive at home, in luncheon clubs or in day care, and transport to and from day care.

Working out how much you will have to pay

We will carry out a financial assessment by a benefits and assessments officer, who will arrange a home visit. You will be asked for details of your income, such as pensions and benefits, outgoings, including rent, mortgage and council tax, and capital - the money you have in the bank, building society, shares or investments. It does not include the value of your home.

When looking at your capital, we may apply the same discretion which is used when completing an assessment for residential care services, as outlined in the Department of Health 'Care Act 2014' document.

Who pays for their services

In most cases, we will provide you with a short period of free intense care and support in your own home first. After the first few weeks, we will review your care and support and discuss whether or not you need further long-term services. Where long-term support is required, you will be asked to undergo a means-tested financial assessment to determine how much you may be asked to pay.

If you have savings below £14,250 (for the financial year 2017-18), they are not taken into account when working out your charge for services. If you have savings over £14,250, these will be taken into account.

When the financial assessment is completed, we will talk to you about any other expenses you may have as a result of your illness or disability. These may then be taken into account when we work out how much you have available to pay towards your services.

How much you will pay

Meals taken at a day centre or luncheon club cost £3.30 for a two course meal or £2.50 for the main course and 85p for the dessert. Transport to and from a day centre (if provided) costs £2.60 per day. The personal laundry service, where available, costs £4.60 per load. The amount you pay for other support services will be calculated from your financial assessment.

You will be asked to pay the full cost of providing the service if your capital is over £23,250 (for the financial year 2017-18); you decide not to tell us about your financial circumstances; or you refuse to sign the financial assessment form. If your capital is less than £23,250 we will look at your assessable income, the level of service you receive, any capital that you have over £14,250 and any disability-related costs.

If you are a couple we will assess you jointly, using both you and your partner's income and savings, and as an individual, using only your income and savings.

Please be aware that you may have to wait a few weeks before your first bill is sent to you.

If you disagree with the amount we ask you to pay

If you are unhappy with the financial assessment, contact your local benefits, assessments and charging team.

If your circumstances change

If your financial circumstances, care needs or housing support needs change, contact your social care assessor / co-ordinator so that we can reassess how much you pay. If there is a change to your charges, our benefits, assessments and charging team will tell you.

How to pay

Your first invoices will be based on the care and support that has been planned and agreed with you and your social care assessor / co-ordinator. We sometimes have to wait for the person or company who has been asked to support you to confirm what levels of service were actually provided for you. If it turns out that the amount of support you were provided with was different, we will adjust your account as soon as possible once any difference is confirmed. By doing this we are able to provide you with an invoice in a timely manner, thus reducing any concerns you may have in the initial stages of paying for care and support.

We endeavour to send you an invoice every four weeks for the services you receive.

We will print the dates of the care you are being charged for on your invoice. You can arrange to pay by standing order or direct debit.

You will be given the opportunity to complete a direct debit mandate as part of completing the financial assessment. If you do not wish to do so at that time further details about how to make this arrangement will be sent to you with your first invoice.

Direct payments - paying for your care

If you have agreed to receive a direct payment to buy your own care and support, you will be asked to open a dedicated bank account for the sole purpose of receiving the direct payment. You will also be expected to contribute towards the cost of your care and support. This amount will be calculated as part of the financial assessment process. When you are informed of the amount you have to pay, you must make arrangements to pay the assessed amount into the dedicated bank account. We will help you to make this arrangement.

For housing related support services

If you receive help at home through for example, Telecare, Lifeline, a warden service or because you reside in a supported living scheme, we can work out the amount you can contribute towards the cost of those services through the same financial assessment process.

If your financial circumstances or housing support needs change, contact your social care assessor / co-ordinator so that we can reassess how much you pay. If there is a change to your charge, your landlord or service provider will tell you.

See the housing related support services page for more details about the support services we can provide to help vulnerable people live independently.

More information about social care charges

For more information, contact your local benefits assessment and charging team:

Central area (Hambleton, Richmond and Selby)
Benefits, assessments and charging team manager
White Rose House,
Thurston Road,
Northallerton
DL6 2NA
Tel: 01609 533840

East area (Scarborough, Whitby and Ryedale)
Benefits, assessments and charging team manager
North Yorkshire House,
442-444 Scalby Road,
Scarborough
YO12 6EE
Tel: 01609 534648

West area (Harrogate, Ripon and Craven)
Benefits, assessments and charging team manager
Jesmond House,
31/33 Victoria Avenue,
Harrogate
HG1 5QE
Tel: 01609 535203