Part 1 of the Care Act, introduced in April 2015, is intended to consolidate the law regarding care and support.
The first stage of the Act is already underway and includes a national level of care and support, providing consistency in care across all local authorities. It also includes more duties for local authorities to arrange care, support and advice, together with support for carers and an extended deferred payment arrangement. These national changes are intended to put people at the centre of their care and support, taking into account their wellbeing , wishes and feelings.
There have been delays in the second stage of the Act, in particular the protection against unlimited care costs, known as "the cap on care costs". There were proposals to introduce a care cap of £72,000 from April 2016, meaning that an individual would not pay more than £72,000 towards their overall care costs. However, these changes have now been delayed and are expected to come into effect in 2020. Costs under this cap only apply to the actual cost of care, rather than accommodation charges, which may only equate to 1/3rd of the cost paid to a care home.
We can offer legal advice on care home fee planning to anyone concerned about future care costs.
Please feel free to contact Lisa Gray or any other member of our Private Client team.