Paying for care, what's allowed?

Hello, my wife needs a carer and after an assessment, social services decided she needs 2.5 hours per day, but they also said her budget would be £514 per week.

We’re confused, we found a qualified self employed carer, her charges add up to only £350 for the 17.5 hours, so we have a few questions.

Is there a good webpage that explains in detail what the ‘budget’ can be used for?

If we go ahead with this carer, will our budget be reduced to £300?

Can we use this carer for more than the 17.5 hours as long as the total cost remains below the budget?

If not

Can we also employ a cleaner or dog walker out of the budget?

Thanks for any help.

Wow, that’s a generous sum for 17.5 hours care!

Are they expecting you to use a payroll company? This money may include payroll costs.

Also, our LA has two rates of DP per hour - one if you use agency care and one of you source it privately (as you have done.)

If cleaning and dog walking are not part of the care plan - then you need to be careful as DP can only be used to pay for those things agreed in the care plan. (However, if a care worker is happy to do those things, then you may get a way with it. However, if your accounts show X amount was paid to ‘Walkies’ or similar… and you were audited - I suggest not.


Stephen, be careful, I don’t think they have done their sums properly.
To protect yourself from later demands for repayment, just write a very simple letter to the care manager asking her to clarify what the money can be spent on.

Thank you both for the quick replies.

It’s possible I’ve got it wrong, although they’ve done the assessment, we’ve had nothing official back from them yet, they said getting our own care would save a lot of time, so I telephoned to get details of what details we needed from carer, in that call they mentioned the 2.5 hours, then £514, I was confused so asked again, and they confirmed £514, I could still be misunderstanding.

However, the £514 is what it would cost if using a care agency where we live, so it’s good to know there may be 2 different rates.

I might get more clarity when we get something official back from them.

Any update Stephen? was that the right amount for those hours?

Sounds about right for breakdown of £20 per hour- for paid carers, £9.50 to carer and £15.50 to agency who sends them!-underfunded by £5 per hour