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Cutting care bill costs

Discussion in 'Legal and financial issues' started by DaveSmith, Oct 31, 2018.

  1. DaveSmith

    DaveSmith Registered User

    Oct 28, 2017
    My mother is coming out of hospital very soon and her care package has gone up considerably. Before it was one carer who came once a day. Now, it is two carers as a pair, coming four times per day. That is 8x the cost.

    She has about £45K in the bank. She is going to gift £6K to myself (I have power of attorney), to use up her annual £3K gift allowance for this year and last year.

    I understand that to get support for your care bill, you need to have liquid(?) assets below £22K. Is that correct?

    The care package bill will be about 4 visits per day x £30 per visit = £120 per day, or £3,600 per month. This will eat into her savings pretty rapidly.

    Is it legal for me to take say £15K of her savings and buy a car that has been converted so that we can put a wheelchair in the back, with a ramp? I am thinking that this would reduce her liquid assets closer to the £22K threshold, so that we help preserve some of her estate and get greater funding from the state sooner. She cannot drive but obviously it would be great for her as we cannot get her into a car normally.

    Or, do they take a dim view on these kinds of tactics when doing a financial assessment?

    Any other tips to get the assets down?
  2. nitram

    nitram Registered User

    Apr 6, 2011
    North Manchester
    The upper limit of assets is £23250 in England.

    The 2X£3k relates to inheritance tax, it would be regarded as deliberate deprivation of assets in any financial assessment by the LA.

    You might just get away with the converted car but I doubt it.

    You could buy a pre-paid funeral plan which most,if not all, LAs will accept as legitimate expenditure. Be careful if you do this as not all funeral directors accept all plans and not all plans can be used with all funeral directors.
  3. marionq

    marionq Registered User

    Apr 24, 2013
    With costs of £3600 a month you would be better off looking at care home places where she would have company, food and utilities covered, less stress for family.
  4. Beate

    Beate Registered User

    May 21, 2014
    #4 Beate, Oct 31, 2018
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2018
    "Dim view" is exactly correct. What you are proposing to do is deliberate deprivation of assets with the sole aim of reducing care costs. The council can dig back years into your mother's finances and have the right to make you pay it all back, so why get yourself into hot water in the first place? While it's understandable that you want to save her money, it is first and foremost there to finance good care for her and not for your inheritance, and councils don't have unlimited pockets either.

    Also, attorneys cannot profit from their role, and while £3,000 may be a tax gift allowance, when care costs are in the mix, you have to tread extremely carefully. Small gifts in line with previous behaviour may be acceptable, but not thousands at a time, unless she is a millionaire.
  5. Rosettastone57

    Rosettastone57 Registered User

    Oct 27, 2016
    I agree with Beate. You need to act in her best interests as an attorney. This doesn't mean deliberately reducing the estate for potentially making sure that everyone gets their cut later. Inheritance is a privilege not a right. And as other posters have said if you are going to spend over £3,600 in care fees in the home you may find it's better value to go into a care home. My mother-in-law paid over £5,000 a month at her care home but she had 24 7 supervision good care and less aggravation for the rest of the family
  6. Theresalwaystomorrow

    Theresalwaystomorrow Registered User

    Dec 23, 2017
    I only agree with all previous post because that’s the way unfortunately the government looks at it.
    However ‘ my opinion only ‘ is that the comment ‘the money is there first and foremost for her care’ I totally disagree with. That’s the governments attitude! Not the families or those who have saved!
    Most people (not everyone !) do not save to pay for their unexpected care Home fees, most save to leave money to family, if they wanted it for care they would of took out health insurance and not called it savings! Especially when they have paid NI and TAX all their lives.
    It is only this unfair goverment that is taking from those who have saved and giving to those who haven’t .
    So as I said I know that’s the way it is, but for families their savings was not there first and foremost to pay care Home fees or to help support those who can’t because they spent it. It was there for their families .
  7. MaNaAk

    MaNaAk Registered User

    Jun 19, 2016
    I'm with MarionQ because £3600 is more than what dad's care home charges. His care home charges £650 per week! I didn't like the sound of a care home but now my brothers and I can't fault this one. Dad joins in with all the activities or sits watching them or just makes things disappear!

  8. jenniferpa

    jenniferpa Volunteer Moderator

    Jun 27, 2006

    Actually I would say most people save for unexpected things: the proverbial "rainy day".
  9. Theresalwaystomorrow

    Theresalwaystomorrow Registered User

    Dec 23, 2017
    Yes I agree they do, but not for things that others don’t have to pay for if they haven’t saved that’s the whole point .
    If your roof blows off you have to get it replaced and paid for savings or not! Everybody equal.
    This is an unfair charge, this is what is being fought for at the moment.
  10. AliceA

    AliceA Registered User

    May 27, 2016
    #10 AliceA, Nov 1, 2018
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2018
    What is unfair is that no government has really tackled this issue properly.
    Most people have house insurance. This spreads to cost of an event that will not happen to everyone, this is what a supportive society is about.
    I think the majority of us thought that National Insurance was an insurance to cover future needs. I feel the Governments have mislead us all by the name of this Tax.
    Fraud comes to mind!
    Trade Discription is another,
    I also think it unfair that the local councils have the clout to get a below cost fee and expect selfunders to top it up for them. All should be treated the same. The councils should be looking after everyone so add to the list,
    Equality, Discrimination.

    Why have expensive Censuses? We gave 80 plus years notice we were on our way.
  11. Theresalwaystomorrow

    Theresalwaystomorrow Registered User

    Dec 23, 2017
    This site don’t have a ‘thumbs up’ so
    Excellent AliceA. well put.
  12. Rosettastone57

    Rosettastone57 Registered User

    Oct 27, 2016
    I don't have children but I have savings so under the current system I would be self funding. So no I'm not saving to give to family more for a rainy day. But what I have done is already start to put aside money in case I need a carers or a care home should my health deteriorate. I want choice in the future for me as I get older . If I had health insurance I suspect the insurance companies would then dictate where I could go a bit like the local authority do now.
  13. Theresalwaystomorrow

    Theresalwaystomorrow Registered User

    Dec 23, 2017
    We all have different situations and reasons.
    That’s a good point for the campaign thou, Alzheimer’s to be NHS funded for everyone but those who wish to fund themselves can.
    Mayb put that forward ?
  14. Bunpoots

    Bunpoots Registered User

    Apr 1, 2016
    All governments are good at wasting money. They don’t seem to live in the real world - some parties are better than others - but it’s unfair that one disease is excluded from healthcare. Our loved ones suffer from the wrong illness.
  15. Theresalwaystomorrow

    Theresalwaystomorrow Registered User

    Dec 23, 2017
    I am actually meeting up with my local MP in 2 weeks so I will put some strong points across
    However I will remember to add that some may want to pay out of their savings so they should be able to do so ;);)
  16. Normaleila

    Normaleila Registered User

    Jun 4, 2016
    I'm afraid I don't entirely agree. Dementia is not the 'only disease'. Parkinsons, MS, MD, brain or spinal injury, etc - the NHS provides medical treatment but not social care. My uncle, in his 90s, doesn't have dementia but has various relatively minor physical conditions. He's very frail and has been in and out of hospital after falls and chest infections. He's now going into a care home - self funding - because he's just too frail to live alone. Any of us could need paid care, with or without dementia. If we want the taxpayer to fund social care I think it should not just be about dementia - because people don't even want to think about it and hope to avoid it. And social care won't be funded unless enough people vote for it.
  17. Kevinl

    Kevinl Registered User

    Aug 24, 2013
    People don't seem to realise this, my friend's mum has MS and it's likely she may have to go into care soon and if her husband passed away or became unable to cope it would happen then, like anyone with AZ she'd have to pay for her care and her treatment (i.e. doctor's and hospital treatment) would be on the NHS but her care costs would have to be paid by her.
    Why the myth that only people with AZ have to pay for their care is beyond me, it simply isn't true, the limits of £23k and £13k apply to anyone in need of a care home for whatever reason as Normaleila says.
  18. Theresalwaystomorrow

    Theresalwaystomorrow Registered User

    Dec 23, 2017
    I think a lot of people just do not understand the
    It is not any specific illness / disease that justifies this care. It’s the totality of needs for that person that has to fit the criteria.
    We are saying Alzheimer’s / Dementia because generally in late stages of this disease it qualifies for the CHC.
    So regarding the above diseases mentioned they would qualify for CHC if the complexity of needs were there.
  19. Theresalwaystomorrow

    Theresalwaystomorrow Registered User

    Dec 23, 2017
    It’s not a myth that only people with Alzheimer’s have to pay for care.
    But it is a fact that generally people in late stages Alzheimer’s have a complexity of needs that therefore should automatically fit the criteria for funding.
    This is what people are and should be campaigning for.
  20. Kevinl

    Kevinl Registered User

    Aug 24, 2013
    :eek: You haven't seen some of the people in care with my wife, or even my wife and none of them get it, the home no longer applies as it doesn't matter how bad people get they never get it unless someone is terminal stages and then it's given for other medical conditions they have like cancer. Getting CHC for AZ is very difficult, it can be dome but it's pretty rare if that's the only condition you have. My wife can't talk, feed herself, is doubly incontinent, immobile and basically can do nothing for herself.
    it takes two members of staff to get her up and wheelchair her to the lounge where she spends her days either giggling to herself or shouting out uninteligible noises all day until they put her to bed and she isn't the worse one in there as she doesn't have a catheter, isn't fed nasally, doesn't have a bottle of oxygen next to her bed and they don't get CHC either.
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