Care Home Fees ExplainedPepperells
Age UK estimate that the average cost of care home fees in our local area is £32,000 per annum and with a growing and aging population, the demand for social care will only increase. This, combined with reductions in public expenditure on social care, has placed Local Authorities under extreme pressure.
Whilst there is some funding available for those with complex medical needs, if you need to reside in a nursing or residential home you will usually need to fund it yourselves. This is a concern that is raised with us by our clients frequently. Simply speaking, the current rules mean that if you have assets of more than £23,250, you must pay for the full cost of your care. Whilst the Government have promised to reform this, there have been delays as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and previously proposed reforms have been deemed unsustainable in any event, due to the amount of central funding required.
There are actions that you can take to reduce your future care home fee liability. As it stands, if you leave everything to your partner/spouse when you die, the local authority would perform a means assessment on your partner if they needed social care which would consider all your assets, meaning a higher care home fee liability. It is possible to include certain trusts within your Will which will reduce the value of your Estate for the purposes of a means assessment and therefore reduce your liability. You may also be able to make transfers into a trust during your lifetime, which will have a similar effect. This must be done correctly, so we would strongly advise that you seek legal advice before taking any of these courses of action.
If you would like to discuss your options in mitigating any care home fee liability, please do not hesitate to contact the Private Client team on 01482 326511.