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Information for self-funders (capital assets above limit)

If you have savings and investments above £23,250 (not including your own home) you won't be eligible for financial support from the Council towards your care and support costs.

Help from adult care services

Even if you are responsible for paying the full cost of your care and support, you may still be entitled some free services - including:

  • Information and advice on local care and support services that could provide the help you need and help with support planning
  • Help to access pdf icon independent financial information and advice about care funding [79kb]
  • Minor adaptation and small items of equipment (costing less than £1,000 each) that can help maximise your independence and help you live safely at home (equipment must be returned when it is no longer needed).
  • Preventative services provided directly by the Council to prevent or delay care needs becoming more serious (such as training to self-manage a health condition, helping you to access social and leisure activities)
  • Reablement Service - a short period of intensive therapies and support to help you rebuild your strength, mobility, confidence and regain your independence following an illness or injury
  • Mental health aftercare (services provided under section 117 of the Mental Health Act 1983) - if you have been sectioned (compulsorily detained) in a psychiatric hospital, any care and support arranged for your discharge from hospital to prevent your mental health condition from getting worse is provided free of charge.
  • a social care assessment to identify your care and support needs

Help towards care costs from the NHS

  • If you have a serious disability or illness, you might be able to get NHS continuing healthcare
  • If you live in a nursing home, you may be able to get NHS-funded nursing care (paid directly to your care home to reimburse them for the nursing care they provide to you) - which reduces the fees you pay.

Help towards care costs from welfare benefits

  • If you're over state pension age and have a long-term illness or disability that is severe enough for you to need help from someone else to help you care for yourself, or to supervise you to keep you safe, you may be entitled to receive extra money called Attendance Allowance
    You can claim Attendance Allowance even if you don't have anyone helping you care for yourself.
    Attendance Allowance is tax-free, and is not affected by your income or savings.
  • If you're under state pension age and need help from another person to care for yourself due to a long-term illness or disability, or/and you have difficulty walking or getting around, because of a long-term illness or disability, you may be entitled to receive extra money called Personal Independence Payment (PIP) - which replaced the old Disability Living Allowance (DLA).
    You can claim PIP even if you don't have anyone helping you care for yourself.
    PIP is tax-free and is not affected by your income or savings.
  • If you're over state pension age and on a low income, you may be eligible for Pension Credit. There is no upper limit to the level of savings/investments to qualify for Pension Credit. Instead, an amount of £1 per £500 (or part £500) of savings that you have above £10,000 is added to your weekly 'qualifying' income when working out whether you are entitled to Pension Credit to top up your other income. If you qualify for Pension Credit, you may be entitled to other benefits to help with housing costs (Housing Benefit and Council Tax Support).

Help to arrange your care and support at home and in the community

Adult Care Services can give you information and advice to help you arrange your care and support privately, or you can find your own care and support - such as using the Reading Services Guide to find suitable providers that can meet your needs, or you could contact an independent care advice service such as My Care My Home.

Alternatively you can ask Adult Care Services to manage your care and support arrangements on your behalf - Adult Care Services arrange care and support to meet your unmet needs (as identified in your care needs assessment) and we ask you to agree, in writing, to pay the full cost of your care and support plus pdf icon arrangement fees [64kb] (to cover some of the administration costs of arranging and monitoring your care and support).

Things to consider when choosing a care home

If you have savings and investments above £23,250 (not including your own home) you must pay your care home provider directly. You may be able to claim Attendance Allowance or Personal Independence Payment.

Get information and advice on options to meet your care needs: Adult Care Services offer free information and advice to discuss your needs and help you identify suitable care homes or other care and support options that may be available to you. Or you could contact an independent care advice service such as My Care My Home or find your own care homes - such as using the Reading Services Guide.

If you might need help with funding your care home fees in future (if your capital reduces to below £23,250) - check that any care home you are considering would contract with the council* when your capital reduced (*this would be the local council with adult social care responsibility for the area where the care home is).

If your preferred care home won't contract with the local council at a rate that the council is prepared to pay to meet your needs, you will need to arrange a third-party (family member or friend or charity) who is willing and able to pay the difference between what the council would pay and the fee being charged by the care home, otherwise you may have to move to another care home. See our pdf icon Choice of Accommodation and Additional Payments Policy [127kb].

If you need the capital from your home to pay your care home fees

If you are responsible for the full cost of your care home fees, but most of your capital is tied up in a property that was your main and only home you may be eligible to apply for a Deferred Payment Agreement (DPA) with the Council.

A DPA is a kind of loan which allows you to delay the need to sell your property during your lifetime. The loan must be repaid in full when the property is sold or from your estate.

A DPA is just one type of care-home funding arrangement and you should always seek independent financial advice before making decisions about how to fund your long-term care.

Interim funding arrangements

If you are in the process of applying to become the legal financial representative of someone who can't enter into a DPA because they have lost the mental capacity to manage their money or make financial decisions and you can't yet access accounts or funds to pay their care home fees you could apply for an pdf icon Interim Funding Arrangement [119kb].

This is a short-term loan which must be repaid as soon as you are granted the legal authority to access their funds unless you immediately enter into a Deferred Payment Agreement.

You should always seek independent financial advice before making decisions about how to fund your long-term care.

What to do if your capital reduces to the Upper Capital Limit

You may become eligible for financial support from the local council to help towards your care and support costs. How much financial help you get depends on the outcome of:

  • a pdf icon financial assessment [120kb] to determine the most you could afford to pay each week towards your care and support 
  • a care assessment to identify your care and support needs and the cost of meeting your unmet eligible needs.

If your savings are approaching £23,250, and you live in Reading Borough, contact Adult Care Services about three months before you think your savings will drop to below the upper capital limit to request a care needs assessment.

If you no longer live in Reading Borough (for example, you moved to a care home in another area and have been self-funding there), contact the local council for your area which has adult social care responsibilities.

Independent information and advice on paying for long-term care

Before you make decisions about how to fund your long term care it is important you get clear information and unbiased advice about your financial options. Some independent financial information and advice is available free. Specialist independent financial advisers often charge for their time, but provide detailed knowledge and advice tailored to your situation about your options on paying for long-term care. pdf icon Finding financial advice on paying for care [79kb].

Planning ahead for when you can't manage your money

Even if you're able to manage your money yourself now, it is important to plan and put legal arrangements (e.g. a Lasting Power of Attorney) into place about who would make decisions about your finances, property and manage your day to day financial affairs, if you were to lose mental capacity to make decisions about your financial affairs in the future. Mental capacity to manage finances.

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