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The Care Act 2014

The Care Act 2014 came into effect from 1 April 2015 and is all about adults with care and support needs and those who care for them. 

Helping you get the care you need

If you need to arrange some extra care, we can help you through the process.

What is the Care Act?

The Care Act aims to ensure the wellbeing of people in need of care and support services. It also aims to bring about the personalisation of care services, putting the person at the centre of the process.

How does it work?

Under the Act, anyone who a local council thinks might need care and support is entitled to a needs assessment, which must be provided free of charge. The assessment is usually carried out by a social worker, or sometimes an occupational therapist, and results in a care and support plan being drafted. The plan should, where possible, be produced with the input and agreement of the person needing care.

How to get a care needs assessment

If you need social care, whether that's home adaptations or a care home, a care needs assessment is the first step.

When the local council carries out a needs assessment, they'll also do a financial assessment to see whether they will contribute to the cost of providing necessary care and support. If so, a personal budget is calculated. The personal budget is the amount that the local council will pay towards the care services assessed as being necessary to meet the person's needs, whether in their own home or in a care home.

More about the financial assessment

This is where your local council will ask about your finances and income to work out how much you will contribute to your care.

What if the local council won’t pay for care?

If the local council does not contribute towards the costs of care services, they still have duties to provide information and advice to help people in this situation (known as being a 'self-funder').

Sometimes a self-funder can request the local council to arrange their care for them, but they might need to pay a fee for this.

Phone icon We're here to help

We offer support through our free advice line on 0800 678 1602. Lines are open 8am-7pm, 365 days a year. We also have specialist advisers at over 140 local Age UKs.

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Last updated: Apr 20 2021

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