Social Work services charges
South Lanarkshire Health and Social Care Partnership aims to enable people to live at home independently, safely, and for as long as possible. To help us achieve this, we may need to ask you to contribute towards the cost of your care and support.
Charges apply whether services are provided directly by the Partnership, purchased from an external provider, or where a Self-directed Support (SDS) Budget is provided.
South Lanarkshire Council requires a financial assessment to be carried out to assess an individual’s ability to contribute to their chargeable services/budget. Environmental Services however are charged at a flat rate and not means tested.
What can I be charged for or required to make a contribution towards?
- SDS Personal Budget
- Care at Home, including Supported Living and Housing Support
- Day Care and Day Opportunities
- Environmental Services:-
- Community Alert Alarm
- Frozen meals
- Lunch Clubs
What services are not charged for?
- Criminal Justice Social Work Services
- Information and advice
- Care management and assessment
- Personal Care for all ages (subject to assessment)
- New, intermediate or additional Care at Home services for up to 42 days following discharge from the hospital for age 65 or over (subject to criteria)
What happens during a financial assessment?
A financial assessment based on information provided by you will be undertaken to calculate how much, if anything, you need to pay towards the cost of your services or budget. A Financial Assessor will send a Financial Assessment form to you or if you have a legal representative the form will be sent to them for completion. You will be asked to provide all the required supporting documentation relating to your finances.
Documentary evidence will need to be provided of all your benefits, income and capital. If you wish to provide evidence of eligible household costs such as rent, Council Tax, mortgage interest payments or household insurance premiums, we will include these in your assessment.
What income and expenditure is taken into account in the Financial Assessment?
Income from all sources including DWP benefits are taken into account. There are some income sources or amounts that are fully disregarded before a contribution is assessed such as Disability Living Allowance (Mobility), Personal Independence Payment (Mobility), Child Benefit/Child Tax Credits, Payments from the Independent Living Fund, War Disablement Pension, compensation payments paid through the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme and any payment made from the Advance Payment Scheme.
Other income/benefit types which are part disregarded are as follows:
- If you receive either Attendance Allowance (High Rate), Disability Living Allowance Care Component (High Rate) or PIP Daily Living (Enhanced Rate) and do not have night time services funded or provided by the council, £33.65 per week is disregarded.
- Earned income - £20 disregarded
There are a number of other disregards which are applied if you are married or in a civil partnership. A Financial Assessor will provide full details when the financial assessment is undertaken.
Will my capital and savings be taken into account?
If you are below state pension age and have capital/savings of less than £6,000 this will not be taken into account when calculating your contribution. If you have more than £6,000 there will be a tariff income of £1 applied for every £250 or part of £250 over £6,000.
If you are above state pension age and have capital/savings of less than £10,000, this will not be taken into account when calculating your contribution. If you have more than £10,000 there will be a tariff income of £1 applied for every £500 or part of £500 over £10,000.
Property values are not taken into account in respect of non-residential services. However, if you receive income from property that you own this will be treated as income.
Your assessable income is calculated by deducting any eligible housing costs from your total available income. Each year the Council sets a level, known as a Minimum Income Threshold, below which a person cannot be asked to make a contribution. These thresholds are in line with DWP benefit rates and are uprated each financial year.
The 2023/24 thresholds are:
- Single person below pension age - £156 per week
- Single person over pension age - £252 per week
- Couples below pension age - £238 per week
- Couples over pension age - £384 per week
How will charges be calculated?
If your assessable income is less than your income threshold figure, there will be no contribution applied. If your assessable income is more than your income threshold figure you may be expected to make a contribution. The amount above the threshold is known as your excess income.
The contribution will then be calculated as 60% of the excess income. You will never be expected to contribute more than the chargeable element of your services or budget.
Can I get a full benefits check at the same time?
As part of the financial assessment, the Financial Assessor will carry out a benefits check in order to identify any additional benefits you may be entitled to.
What if I refuse or fail to provide this information?
If you choose not to disclose your finances or fail to provide a completed financial assessment form with relevant documentary evidence you will be expected to pay the full costs of your chargeable services or budget.
How do I pay the assessed contribution?
The contribution to services or a budget will depend on the funding options chosen. If you choose a Direct Payment, the assessed contribution will be deducted from the payment at source. For all other options, an invoice will be issued 4 weekly in arrears, with the initial invoice covering the period from the start date of service or budget.
Do I have to tell you if my circumstances change?
Yes, if your circumstances change, it is your responsibility to advise the Financial Assessor, in case there is a requirement to re-assess your contribution.
What happens if I cannot afford the assessed contribution?
If paying the assessed contribution causes you to experience financial hardship, you can request a review of the contribution. The review will require you to provide a reason why you cannot afford the contribution and to evidence all your outgoings. Your case will be considered and if we are satisfied that there is genuine hardship, your contribution may be waived or abated for a period, subject to further review.
What if I am unhappy with any part of the financial assessment?
You can discuss any concerns with the Financial Assessor or your lead worker. If you feel your situation cannot be resolved by talking to a member of staff you may wish to make a formal complaint to Social Work Resources.
How can I make a formal complaint?
We will always try to deal with your complaint quickly. But if it is clear that the matter will need a detailed investigation, we will tell you and keep you updated on our progress. We have a two-stage complaints procedure.
You can contact us:-
- by phoning 0303 123 1015 or any local office
- Minicom 0303 123 1017
- by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
- by filling in the social work enquiry online form
- in writing to any local office or to the Complaints Section, Directorate, South Lanarkshire Health & Social Care Partnership, floor 9, Council Offices, Almada Street, Hamilton ML3 0AA
If you require further information about your financial assessment, please get in touch with your Financial Assessor or your local social work office on 0303 123 1008.
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