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Last updated:
13/12/2017

How do I pay for residential care?

What are Deferred Payment Agreements (DPA)?

  1. Overview
  2. What is residential care and will I have to pay?
  3. What is capital and how will the local authority assess this?
  4. How will the local authority assess my income?
  5. What is the most I will have to pay?
  6. What are top-up fees?
  7. What are Deferred Payment Agreements (DPA)?
  8. The Mental Health Act and section 117 aftercare
  9. What if I cannot afford the charges?
  10. Next steps

If you are moving in to a care home it may become your home for the rest of your life. If you own a property that is classed as ‘capital’ the local authority will ask you to pay towards the cost of your care home.

This might mean you have to sell your property to pay for your care. A Deferred Payment Agreement (DPA) lets you to delay selling your home to pay for your care.

You must meet three criteria in order to have a DPA. You must:

  • Have care needs that can only be met in a care home
  • Have no assets worth £30,000 or more other than your home, and
  • Not be eligible for a capital disregard e.g. where your partner would continue to live in your home

There are some times where you could still be refused a DPA, for example if the value of your home is low.

If you do not meet all of the criteria for a DPA you can ask for one but the local authority does not have to give you one.

For a DPA you would use your house as security, like a mortgage. You may need to sell it at a later date to pay the cost of the care. Your DPA can last until death. At this point the local authority would recover the cost of your care from the sale of your house. You can be charged interest on the DPA so the amount that you owe the local authority can increase as time goes on. You should get independent financial advice before choosing a DPA.

For a DPA you would use your house as security, like a mortgage. You may need to sell it at a later date to pay the cost of the care.

Within this subject

  1. Overview
  2. What is residential care and will I have to pay?
  3. What is capital and how will the local authority assess this?
  4. How will the local authority assess my income?
  5. What is the most I will have to pay?
  6. What are top-up fees?
  7. What are Deferred Payment Agreements (DPA)?
  8. The Mental Health Act and section 117 aftercare
  9. What if I cannot afford the charges?
  10. Next steps

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