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Discussion in 'I have a partner with dementia' started by dostbury2, Oct 8, 2015.
Could anyone give me some information on how to prevent losing your home due to care home costs
The following may be of help.
Have you any further information you can give us about the situation. There are many ways of funding costs which do not mean losing your home also there are legal clauses which can stop your home from being sold out from under you, so we need to know if you are married, if your home is in joint names, do you have family living at home with you... without naming figures, can you give us a bit more detail please.
This looks like a daunting read but sections 8 and 9 give details of how the financial assessment process works.
I know you didn't ask this question, but there are some benefits to being a self-funder; I'm not the only person on TP to be relieved that I didn't have to argue with the LA about funding my mum's care.
Dostbury2 put this on the blog it might help other people understand a bit more,
Hi everyone on the forum. I find it astonishing that some people have lost their homes due the cost of care homes. Myself and my partner own a home and I would like to know how this situation can be avoided. My partner has been diagnosed with Alzhiemers recently, but there has been a problem for three to four years.
If your partner has to co into residential care then your home is completely disregarded because you need to live there so your home is safe.
yes my hubby went into care and i still live in our house they cant take it away as you need some where to live. the funding for care like this is they take all the partners state pension and half of his private pension
Yes, that's absolutely correct, it was the same with us. I'm not sure of the exact figures, but last year, as my husband needed to go into care, and he had less than about £14000 in savings, they took all of his State Pension, half of his private pension, and he lost his Attendance Allowance.
If the person going into care has between about £14000 and £24000 in savings, there's a sliding scale of how much extra you pay - over about £24000 means you are self funding. After John went into care, I changed my will, and left my half of the home, plus all my savings, to my children. That way, if I had predeceased John, the children would have had the value of half the home.
As there is nobody who wants to buy half a home, had I died first, the LA would have put a charge against the "half" that was still my husband's. I think it might be called a lien. Should your spouse go into care, and you are visited by someone from the finance department of the LA, you do not have to disclose any of your private information. Hope this helps.
What happens if the one in care dies and the one left in the house then wants to move. Does the LA take what is owing when they move?
No. There is no debt accruing in that situation so there is nothing owed.
Hello Jennifer, can you expand on that for me. I am not sure I understand. Thanks
Jennifer is in the USA so may not see your question for a while so I will answer on her behalf, hope you don't mind Jennifer.
When one half of a couple goes into care the value of the home is completely disregarded, it is treated as if it does not exist. So when the person in care dies then there is nothing to pay. This of course will be very different should the second partner ever require care. The house will be counted as an asset and available for paying care.
Hope I have explained it as well as Jennifer would have.
If the house is owned by tenants in common then that is another story.
May I ask a question?
If a partner is just that ie a single adult in a relationship, and the couple are sharing and living in the house together - is the situation the same? I mean NOT a spouse or civil partner - not married; no legal contract entered into?
Is it that the couple jointly own the house, or are legally a couple, that is significant?
Thanks Jay, it makes sense to me now.
Hi Jaymor. Re your answer to the question of losing your home if a spouse goes into care. You say if the house is owned as Tenants in Common the rules are different. Can you tell me what the difference is please. My husband has Alzheimer's. Many thanks. Diannie
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This is as it was explained to me by my solicitor Diannie:
They recommended that the house needed to be owned as Tenants in Common so that my half of the value of the house was protected (and could be willed to my children) should I die first.
If my husband has to go into care then the LA will put a charge against his half of the property. They have to allow me to live in the property or even sell it and buy something more suitable with the proceeds but once I die they will take their share.
Should the house be owned jointly rather than as Tenants in Common then the LA would not be able to put a charge against it if the first spouse goes into care, but of course you run the risk of the whole value of the property being taken should you predecease your husband.
Hope this is clear, as I say this is how I understand it, but it's best to talk to a solicitor. They often offer a free half hour to carers.
I don't actually understand the question (sorry it's probably me).
If you're in an "informal" (for want of a better word but meaning not married or civil partners) relationship with someone and living with them then what claim would you have on the property?
If you moved in with someone who already owned a property so you have no equity in it and they have to go into care, is that the kind of situation you mean?
Ok - well `your solicitor is wrong about this. However the house is held, jointly or tenants in common, should your spouse go into care, the house is disregarded completely provided you as the spouse are still living in it. No charges will be placed on it.
However if you own the house as tenants in common and you die before your spouse in care, 50% of the value of the house now potentially can be used to pay for care (assuming you have willed your share to someone else such as a child). However, even in this case the LA can't just place a lien against that 50% value. They have to show that there is someone willing to buy 50% of a house. Often the value of that is essentially zero since the only person likely to buy said 50% is the other owner. If the house is held jointly then obviously the spouse in care inherits the whole thing and it definitely will become possible for the LA to place a charge against it.
Now as to the "what is a partner" question from Shedrech - actually an unmarried partner who lives in the same property as the person going into care is normally treated the same as someone who is married.
Esmeralda, this part of your reply is incorrect.
A LA cannot place a charge/offer a Deferred Payment Agreement on a property that has already been disregarded.
Also if you do decide to sell to buy something more suitable firstly your husband/whoever has PoA would have to agree to passing on all or a percentage of their share to you and then the LA would also have to agree.
Well, I just hope you are right Jennifer and Pete, although my solicitor was very clear on this. I was upset because I put a lot more money into the house than my OH did, and I would like to protect this for my children. Unfortunately when we bought this house it was just put in joint names, 50/50. If I had thought at the time the split could have been 70/30 or whatever but of course that's too late now.