Personal Budget - confused need help please

Hello, I am brand new here, as mentioned above very confused about the above.

I look after my partner, they have multiple care needs, after a social worker told us to get a financial assessment to get help with respite for myself.

We did the assessment and as we had less than £23,000 we would have to contribute £157 towards going in a care home for respite.

The Brokerage team also mentioned apart from occasional respite, ie my partner going in a home for a week whilst I had a holiday, they said a Carer could take my partner to a local cafe, bird sanctuary etc for up to 2 hours.

So, this was arranged for 2 days a week and a 2 hour session.
We were told this cost us £12.55 a week, so we agreed, seemed good value.

Now 6 months on we have received an invoice for over £4000, It has shocked us. We don’t have that amount, plus the assessment said we would pay just £12.55?

Now, (sorry to get too confusing) I have found a letter and it says we are entitled to a Personal Budget of £160 a week? We have never received this money. Have been phoning and the finance team unfortunately we’re not very good, they had no idea what’s going on!

I’m not too brilliant myself and my partner can’t grasp it, I don’t want to burden them. Can anyone have an idea what’s going on, we are just so new to this.
The actual respite breaks in the care home, we got an invoice for instance last one was £178 and I just paid it from our bank account.

Can anyone please help, I’ve rung social services and again they said they are not sure.

A very worried Carer


Firstly welcome to Carers Connect :slightly_smiling_face:

I suggest that you contact our Helpline either by telephone or email with the information that you have provided here - they will be able to give you relevant advice in complete confidence.

Our telephone Helpline is available on 0808 808 7777 from Monday to Friday, 9am – 6pm (excluding Bank Holidays) or you can contact us by email (


First, don’t panic. Social workers are generally useless when it comes to anything money related. I once reclaimed £8,000 for mum after she was massively overcharged! I have been dealing with accounts etc. for 40 years. You mentioned £23,000, that’s the single rate, but if you are a couple, you can choose the higher joint rate of £46,000 which is better if you don’t work or have a low income. Was this explained to you? We’re you given a WRITTEN statement of how they calculated your financial contribution? I would make a Subject Access Request to the council, asking for copies of everything on file relating to your finances. You should be able to do this online on the council’s website. By law they must do this within 28 days. Also make a formal complaint, again on their website. Do NOT ring them up, put everything in writing so they cannot deny anything later! The Carers UK helpline is great, a long time ago they made me £50 a week better off, when I really needed it. It may take a few days for them to get back to you as they are very busy.

I’m sure having a letter from the council of these amounts you should pay should help you. I myself keep a copy of everything.

Our living situation is a little complex so it was best to do the assessment as a single person. Can I ask this personal budget, apparently we have one, but where will it be? Are the council keeping it and we have to ask them to pay this invoice?

I have a letter saying the care would be £12:55 a week, I like to keep letters from organisations.
Not even received a letter for the latest assessment? Have asked a few times, it was the Brokerage team who gave us the amount the respite care home stay.
Yes a subject access request sounds a good idea, they are so difficult to deal with. The finance team member seemed clueless.
Thanks so much

Clueless definitely seems an apt word!

I keep everything in ring binders, with monthly dividers, and keep it for years - my son was brain damaged and since Social Services went “paperless” they can’t find anything!!!

Every county seems to work differently with regards to things like personal budgets. I would suggest looking at the LA website and searching there, if nothing relevant appears ring their helpline number and ask if they can tell you where to find it on their website? (It may well not be there, but if you ask it will at least flag it up as missing.

You and your partner should have had a copy of a Needs Assessment for your caree, and a Carers Assessment for yourself.
They should have been sent in draft form for you to correct if needed, and then signed off.


Thank you for the information regarding the Carer’s helpline, I’ve had another call back to see if it’s been resolved. This was from a duty social worker who said herself, this seems very wrong!

We have received nothing regarding our needs in writing, I have so much to worry about and they make things worse.

I’ve been told to wait for the head of the team to look at it on Monday!

Plus, it’s the computer’s faults, I think the subject access request is a good idea.
Thanks again bowlingbun

Happy to help, I’ve learned everything the hard way. Caring is like Snakes and Ladders! Feel free to share any issues here and ask how to deal with them. If we don’t have an immediate answer we can usually point you in the right direction.

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