In the run up to the general election you may remember the Conservative party proudly announcing a cap on care home fee costs. The cap was due to be introduced in April 2016. What has been much more quietly announced is that the cap will now be ‘delayed’ until 2020, leaving many speculating as to whether it will ever become a reality.
So where does this leave people who are living in care or who are concerned about what would happen if they require care in the future?
Currently, there is no cap at all on how much an individual may have to pay for their residential care. If your capital is over £23,250, you will be ‘self-funded’, meaning that you will pay all of your care. Whether your home is included in this calculation will depend on who owns it and who is living there. Once your capital drops below this £23,250, the council will start to contribute towards your care. It is only once your capital drops to £14,250 that the council have a responsibility to pay for your care (although this is not an open cheque book!).
If you ‘care needs’ meet certain criteria, the NHS will have a duty to fund your care, irrespective of you financial position. Sadly, NHS funding is often only agreed if you fight your corner.