The cost of adult social care

The cost of care

Under the Care Act 2014 local authorities have the power to charge for a number of services provided with some exceptions including assessment of needs and care planning. Tower Hamlets does not charge for Reablement and Carers’ support services. For a full list of services for which local authorities cannot charge for please refer to the charging policy.

The charge is determined by an assessment process to establish how much the person receiving care can contribute towards the cost of their care based on their individual financial circumstances. The maximum weekly contribution towards a community based care package is capped at £250.00 even if the weekly cost of the care is higher than £250.00.

We will complete a financial assessment to identify the contribution for community-based and residential services. This includes:

  • Residential and Nursing Care Services
  • Extra Care Sheltered Housing Services
  • Sheltered Living Services
  • Home Care Services (also known as Domiciliary Care)
  • Day Care Services
  • Respite Care
  • Care purchased via Personal Budget (Direct Payments)

More details of services that we charge for can be found in the Charging and Financial Assessment policy. Charges for services provided are determined through a financial assessment process which is based on the means tested approach.

Top ups

Service users and their families can ‘top up’ their personal budget to buy additional support or services above their financial contribution if they choose to, for example to buy their care from a provider of their choice. Service users may also arrange for contributing third parties to make additional payments to cover the cost of a care home that is more expensive than the Council would usually expect to pay. The Council will at all times ensure that personal budgets are sufficient to meet individuals’ eligible care needs. Any ‘top ups’ will be the individual’s choice, and can only be made once they are aware of their right to have all their eligible care needs met without the requirement for a ‘top up’.

Making payments at a future date

Our deferred payment scheme is designed to help you if you have been assessed as having to pay the full cost of your residential care – but cannot afford to pay the full weekly charge. This might be because most of your savings or capital is tied up in your home. The scheme offers you a loan from the Council, using your home as security. It doesn’t work in exactly the same way as a conventional loan – the Council doesn’t give you a fixed sum of money when you join the scheme, but pays an agreed part of your weekly care and support costs for as long as is necessary. You will pay a weekly contribution towards your care that you have been assessed as being able to pay from your income and other savings. The Council pays the part of your weekly charge that you can’t afford until the value of your home is realised. The part the council pays is your ‘deferred payment’.

Financial information and advice

You may want to get independent financial advice to help you plan for the cost of care and understand the options available to you. A list of local independent financial advisers is available to view here. These advisors are registered with the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). It is important to note that Tower Hamlets Council does not endorse any independent financial advisers.