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Advice on care

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Paying for long term care in Scotland

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Domiciliary Care (care at home) in Scotland

If you are over 65, living in Scotland and have been assessed by the Social Work Service department of your Local Authority as needing care at home, they will provide it free of charge, although you will still need to pay for non-personal care such as;- cleaning, day care, laundry, meals on wheels etc. yourself. This doesn't affect your entitlement to Attendance Allowance or Care component of Disability living allowance.

If you are under 65 it is means tested and each local authorities apply different criteria as to who they will help dependent on need.

Care in a Care Home

In Scotland the cost of care in a care home is broken down into three constituent parts.

  • "Hotel" or accommodation Costs
  • Personal Care
  • Nursing

Providing your needs have been assessed and agreed by your local Social Works Department, they will make flat rate contributions towards any Personal and if necessary Nursing Care you require, based on your physical/care needs and not financial means. A Financial means test is only carried out to determine whether you have to pay for any "Hotel" or accommodation costs. 

£171 per week Personal Care contribution and an additional
£78 per week if Nursing Care is required (2017/18)

However personal Care contribution is only made if you are over 65 and then if you take it you lose any entitlement to Attendance Allowance or the Care Component of the Disability Living Allowance you may have been receiving.  These are currently worth £83.10 per week at the higher rate or £55.65 per week at the (lower rate – for Attendance Allowance) or (middle rate if Disability Living Allowance) both rates are those applying in 2017/18. 

Means Testing

Means testing in Scotland is only done to see if you would also qualify for help towards “Hotel” or accommodation costs.

Those with personal capital assessable assets (and ½ of any jointly held assessable assets) exceeding only £26,250 (2017/18) have to pay for all of their accommodation costs.

Only those currently below: £16,250 (2017/18) qualify for the maximum Local Authority budget, often known as the standard rate or contract rate. Unlike in England, this rate doesn't vary from one local authority to another as there is a National Care Home Contract (NCHC) whichstandardises terms and conditions for local authority funded residents. During 2017/18 this sets the standard rate at

£667.09 p.w. for nursing care 
£574.41 p.w. without nursing care

Of course you can choose a care home which charges above this standard rate for “Hotel” costs but you or a third party, will have to pay the difference.

Even where you do qualify for this standardised rate, they will expect you to pay them all of your income received (including most benefits, or any which you could be entitled to if you claimed them), but excluding a) your Personal Expenses Allowance (currently, £26.40 per week 2017/18) b) if you are over 65 and getting Savings credit - either £6.16 per week (if single) or £9.25 per week (if a couple) (2017/18) Pension Savings Disregard and c) if you are married or have a civil partner who needs some of your pension to continue living at home - 50% of any private pensions you receive-but only if you pass exactly 50% of your pension to them anything less would be ignored). 

Those whose capital exceeds the lower threshold but doesn’t exceed the Upper Threshold will have the value of any capital above the lower limit theoretically converted into extra “tariff income” at a rate of £1 extra “notional income” for every £250 worth of capital exceeding the lower limit. 

This is then added to any actual income received or you would be eligible for, if you claimed it, e.g. benefits. The total is then compared to the standard rate the Scottish Government has agreed. If your combined weekly income figure (including this “tariff income”) but minus yourpersonal allowance (and if married or have a partner who needs some of your income to live on 50% of just your private pension) exceeds this maximum rate, you would need to pay for your own care until your capital reduced to such a level as the “income” didn't meet the standard rate. 

If the combined income, is lower, then your local social works department will pay the standard rate but would expect you to pay them all of your income except the Personal Expenses Allowance and 50% of any private pension but only if you need to and do pay this to a spouse or partner to live on. 

If your capital does exceed £26,250 (2017/18) and need to pay for your own accommodation, but would like to ensure that at least some of your hard earned capital preserved for your beneficiaries then it would pay you to get your FREE no obligation Care Fees Annuity quote .

Professional Care Fees Advice

If you need to pay for your own care, it would pay you to speak to one of our professional care fee advisers today on 01476 589 567

Free Care Fee Funding Plan Quotes

If you need to fund your own care and live in Scotland, find out for FREE just how affordable a care fees funding plan could be.
Provide us with a few details here and one of our advisers will call you back to discuss them.


Please note: These plans are not offered direct by the insurers

A Simple Guide To Care Fee Funding Plans

If you would like to find out more about how a care fees plan works, download a FREE copy of our impartial guide today.


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The information contained in this web site is for general information only and is not financial, investment or tax advice. It is also subject to the UK regulatory regime and is therefore restricted to consumers based in the UK. If you would like to discuss a particular issue or generally ask us how we can advise on your particular situation then please contact us.

Advice on Care is a trading style of Keith Hargraves who is an appointed representative of Intrinsic Financial Planning Limited and Intrinsic Mortgage Planning Limited, which are authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Intrinsic Financial Planning Limited and Intrinsic Mortgage Planning Limited are entered on the FCA register ( under reference 440703 and 440718.

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