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Direct Payments

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Direct Payments for disabled children were introduced in the Carers and Disabled Children Act (2000). Direct Payments are a way of enabling disabled children and their families to arrange the services they want and to have control more over their lives. A person with parental responsibility for a disabled child is given money, in the form of Direct Payments, by the Department of Social Care to pay for services, instead of them arranging services for you.

Who can receive Direct Payments?

People who need services to help them live at home.

This includes:

  • Disabled people aged 16 or 17.
  • People aged 18 or over.
  • People with parental responsibilities.
  • People with learning or physical disabilities.
  • People with mental health problems.
  • Older people.
  • People who are the main carer for someone aged 18 or over.

Anyone who would like Direct Payments must be willing to take the responsibility of arranging and managing their own care. You can get support if needed.

What can I use my Direct Payments for?

To Pay for:

  • Day care services.
  • Respite care/short breaks.
  • Personal care to help you live at home.
  • Small items of equipment to aid day to day living.
  • Transport.
  • Activities to meet your social, leisure, educational and employment needs.
  • Minor adaptations to your home.

What can't I do with the money?

You cannot:

  • Pay for services provided by the Local Authority.
  • Pay for permanent residential care.
  • Pay for health services or housing.
  • Employ or pay for services from a partner or other close relative if they live with you. Unless, in special circumstances, this is approved by The Department of Social Care.

A close relative is a parent, grandparent, aunt, uncle, daughter, son, daughter in law, son in law, step daughter, step son, brother, sister or the spouse or partner of any of these.

What are the advantages of Direct Payments?

  • Increase your independence and give you choice and flexibility in the way you receive services.
  • Give you control over your care.
  • Can improve your quality of life by enabling you to manage your own support to suit your lifestyle.
  • Allow you to arrange your care in new ways.
  • Can be used in combination with services provided by The Department of Social Care.
  • Do not affect your benefit entitlement.
  • Are not subject to taxation.

How do Direct Payments work?

  • Increase your independence and give you choice and flexibility in the way you receive services.
  • Give you control over your care.
  • Can improve your quality of life by enabling you to manage your own support to suit your lifestyle.
  • Allow you to provide your care in new ways.
  • Can be used in combination with services provided by The Department of Social Care.
  • Do not affect your benefit entitlement.
  • Are not subject to taxation.

How will I manage my Direct Payments?

  • You will have a financial assessment
  • You might need to pay the same amount towards your Direct Payments as you would to get services from The Department of Social Care
  • Payments will be made into your Direct Payments bank account
  • You will need to keep financial records on what and how you spend the money
  • The Department of Social Care will monitor your records
  • Your Direct Payments scheme will be reviewed to make sure the people you employ and services you pay for are meeting needs .

Do I have to have Direct Payments if I'm eligible?

  • no!
  • If you choose not to use Direct Payments The Department of Social Care will arrange your services
  • Direct Payments cannot be arranged without your consent.

What do I do next?

If you would like an assessment for Direct Payments:

  • You should contact your named Social Worker
  • If you are not already receiving services contact The Department of Social Care

Support

  • You can have support to arrange, manage, and use your Direct Payments
  • You will get support from a Direct Payment Support Service
  • The Direct Payment Support Service provide advice, information, support and training on a range of topics for people wanting to use Direct Payments

Direct Payments

The Council for Disabled Children has prepared a Parent's Guide to Direct Payments, which enables parents to buy their own services for their disabled children such as respite care, personal care etc. This is available from the Department of Health Publications by telephoning 08701 555 455 and quoting ref. 31762 or email doh@prolog.uk.com

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