Dealing with long term care issues is likely to affect all of us in some way or another during our lifetime. Whether it is providing care for an elderly parent or relative or even needing to receive care for our own needs it can be a very stressful time. Long term care is often required in response to a critical situation such as an unexpected illness or fall, although in other instances you may see the person requiring care gradually deteriorating.
It is important to have access to the correct information regarding the care services and assistance that you could be entitled to with regards to care of the elderly locally.
Your local authority have a social care department who can arrange for an assessment to be carried out which will give a clear indication of the type of long term care you require and where best this care can be provided.
You may receive care at home which could be as simple as making alterations to your home to allow you to continue living independently for as long as possible or you may require some help at home for a couple of hours each day to assist you with getting up and dressed in the morning or help with cleaning your home. When your need for care are more intense it may be preferable for you to be cared for in a residential care home or nursing home.
Who pays for the care that you require is decided by a means test that would be conducted by your local authority and would take into account your property, assets and income. In general terms if you have assets that are higher than the current upper means test limit of £23,350 then you will pay for your own care. One of the concerns for families that are faced with paying for care is that their funds may run out. One of the ways you can protect yourself from this is to consider the purchase of a Care Plan. These are enhanced annuities that are designed to pay a guaranteed income for the life of the annuitant and providing the income is paid directly to a registered care provider the payments will be made tax free.