Care Home Fees: What Happens When the Money Runs Out?
If you have a loved one residing in a care home and are concerned about what might happen when they find themselves running out of money for care home fees, we’re here to help. At Jackman’s Lodge, we understand that this can be a stressful situation to navigate, and we strive to provide clarity and support for families navigating this challenging time.
Who Pays For Care Home Fees?
The amount your loved one pays for care home fees depends on where they live in the UK. In England, any individual who h
as more than £23,250 in savings will be required to pay for their own care – this is known as ‘self-funding’. This includes homeowners, however, exceptions may apply if a partner, child or other dependent is still living in the home.
If your family member has less than £23,250 in savings and is not a homeowner, your local council will be responsible for paying for all or part of their care. If the local authority is covering the cost entirely, they will provide your loved one with a list of available care homes in the area that are within budget. If the individual would prefer to move to a slightly more expensive care home, yourself or another relative can pay an additional top up fee to cover the additional costs.
What Happens When You Run Out of Money in a Care Home?
If your loved one is currently self-funding their care and you’ve noticed savings have dropped beneath the £23,250 threshold, you’ll need to arrange a care assessment as soon as possible. This assessment will offer a comprehensive understanding of their needs and determine the type of funding they may now qualify for. Even if they did not previously qualify for financial assistance, don’t worry, they can still undergo an updated assessment now that circumstances have changed.
Can My Loved One Be Asked to Leave a Care Home if They Can’t Pay?
Generally, a care home cannot evict residents solely due to financial hardship. However, if care home fees aren’t being paid, the care home may work with the local council to address the situation. Depending on the home, some contracts may state that the care home will accept council contributions as payment, others will offer a grace period while the resident makes alternative arrangements.
There may be some occasions when the nursing home can no longer accommodate a resident should they revert to council funding. In these cases, it may be possible for the resident to move to a smaller or shared room in order to cover the shortfall. However, in a rare number of cases, there will be no other choice than for the person to relocate to a different care home.
How Can I Prevent My Loved One From Being Evicted?
The best way to avoid your loved one finding themselves in a situation where they need to leave their current care home is to plan ahead. When choosing a nursing home, encourage them to consider which option would be most affordable in the long-term.
You should also be sure to look over their contract, paying close attention to whether or not help is given to residents who find themselves in this situation later down the line.
Once your family member has settled into a care home, it’s important to assist them in monitoring their finances. This means you’ll be able to provide plenty of notice should their savings dip below the required threshold.
Running Out of Money For Care Home Fees? Follow These Steps:
Request a Care Needs Assessment: Ideally, you should aim to do this at least three months before your loved ones savings are set to dip below the threshold. This provides enough time to complete the assessment and put everything in place. If the assessment proves they’re eligible for assistance, they will then need to complete a financial assessment to confirm whether they qualify for additional funding.
Check Whether They Qualify For NHS Continuing Healthcare: If your loved one has a disability or complex medical problem, they might qualify for free NHS continuing healthcare. Investigate this option to potentially alleviate some of the financial burden.
Find Out Whether They Can Stay in Their Care Home: Check your loved ones’ contract to confirm whether their current home will allow them to stay while they apply for funding. Some care providers might accept the lower rate from your local authority to avoid the individual having to move, or allow them to move to a cheaper room.
Choose Jackman’s Lodge
At Jackman’s Lodge, we take great pride in our compassionate approach to care. Throughout your loved one’s stay, they’ll be treated as an integral member of our family. If any financial challenges should surface during their time with us, we are committed to offering valuable advice and support to alleviate any stress and concerns.
If you’d like to find out more about what to do if your family member is running out of money for care home fees, or you’d like to discuss the care services we provide here at Jackman’s Lodge, please get in touch. Call us on 01483 694299 and speak to one of our friendly staff today.