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Support for self-funders

Additional care home costs

If the result of your financial assessment is that you qualify for us to pay your care home fees, you will only receive funds up to a maximum set amount, known as usual cost.

Usual cost is the standard amount we would expect a care home that can meet your care needs to charge, and we must be able to show that there is at least one suitable care home available at this usual cost.

If you choose a care home above usual cost

Any extra costs, above usual cost, is referred to as either top-ups or additional payments.

Who pays top-ups

You must ask a relative, such as a son or daughter, or friend, to pay any costs above usual cost if you:

  • choose a care home that charges more than your allowance
  • decide on more expensive accommodation within a care home with usual cost accommodation

You cannot pay the extra care home costs yourself unless:

  • you are entering a deferred payment agreement and it has been agreed that you can add this additional cost to your agreement
  • your services are provided under Section 117 of the Mental Health Act 1983

The reason that you can not pay yourself is that your savings would reduce faster and you would need us to contribute more towards your care sooner than necessary.

If we are unable to find you a suitable placement at a care home within usual cost and as a result we arrange to place you in more expensive accommodation out of necessity rather than preference, you will not be asked to pay the top-up costs.

What someone making top-up payments should know

The person making the top-up payment on your behalf must understand that:

  • the amount they must pay could go up if the care home reviews its charges
  • your funding assistance payments will be regularly reviewed and may change - this could make a difference to the amount they must pay payment top-ups will be required for as long as you stay in that care home and this could be a number of years
  • if the payment is not made, or if circumstances change for the person paying and they can no longer afford to pay, you must move to accommodation that charges no more than usual cost

How it works

Notify us of your chosen care home

If your needs assessment identifies that you need to move into a care home, we’ll discuss your options at your needs assessment appointment.
We will always aim to find you accommodation within usual cost.

Please notify us if you would prefer to move into a care home that is above usual cost and you have someone willing to pay the top-up costs.

We’ll arrange your move

We’ll arrange for you to move into your chosen care home.

The details of the person who has agreed to pay your top-Up will then be supplied to the care home so they can be invoiced for the top-up amount.

Payment should be made directly to the care home. The invoice will provide details of how to pay.

Ending top-up payments

If circumstances change for the person paying your top-up costs and they can no longer afford to pay, please contact your community wellbeing worker. You should also inform the residential home where you are staying.

Your community wellbeing officer will be able to look at other options for you and may refer you for reassessment.

Last updated 13 November 2023