Paying for care - Financial Planning Advice in Cumbria

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Paying for care

David Finan, Chartered Financial Planner and Managing Director of Jardine Finan Ltd, gives his top
five tips on what to do if you need to pay for home care or nursing/residential home fees.

  1. If nursing is required, explore the possibility that the NHS may be responsible for total care costs under ‘Continuing Healthcare’, it’s not means rested. If you are unhappy with the initial assessment, use the appeal system to pursue your case.
  2. If the person requiring care still has mental capacity, then Lasting Powers of Attorney should be organised, before any loss in mental capacity would make it impossible to arrange. If none exists when the individual losses mental capacity, then lengthy details in accessing bank accounts & investments will occur whilst application is made to the Court of Protection.
  3. If the ‘Financial Assessment’ by the Local Authority has determined that the individual is ‘Self‐funding’, seek specialist financial advice from an Independent Financial Adviser (IFA) who holds the appropriate additional qualification to advise on Long Term Care Fees. Seek out an Adviser who is an accredited member of the Society of Later Life Advisers (SOLLA). The highest qualified Advisers will hold the title of Chartered Financial Planner.
  4. Ensure that all benefits & entitlements are being claimed, which could include; Attendance Allowance, Carers Allowance, Pensions Credit and funded Nursing Care. An IFA will be able to check whether the financial assessment has been carried out correctly and that only assets which should be included have been.
  5. If property is owned, it can be a difficult decision as to whether the property is retained for letting, or sold. At this stage it could not be gifted as that would fall foul Deprivation of Capital rules. In most cases the family decision is to sell, thus being free of such worries as maintenance/repairs, building insurance, letting agents fees, void periods of occupancy and taxation of the rent. If the property has been neglected, there are specialist companies who can market properties in this category. Specialist IFA’s will be able to put you in touch with them.

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