Our social care system is in crisis, but Walker Foster Solicitors is here to help

IT’S no secret that the adult social care system in the UK is in desperate need of reform, and often the most pressing issue is how service users and their families can pay for vital, necessary care.

With care homes costing on average £846 per week, families can struggle to fund care for elderly relatives, but luckily, help is available from both the NHS and from local councils.

Robert Cole is a private client solicitor for Walker Foster Solicitors, who specialises in care fees and funding. He has helped a variety of families understand and take control of care fees for their loved ones, discover funding available to them, and even collect unclaimed funding to which they are entitled.

He said: “People are often surprised to hear that the NHS can potentially fund the entire cost of their loved one’s care via Continuing Healthcare.

“Whether someone is eligible depends on several factors, such as how complex, intense, and unpredictable their nursing care needs are. This will be assessed initially by a GP, a nurse or a social worker, and then by a panel of healthcare professionals.

“At Walker Foster, we can advise on applying for these assessments, provide representation, and help to appeal when claims are disputed.

“The other surprising thing is that even if you’ve already paid for care, you could claim that back, starting from April 2012, if the criteria was met and they were not assessed at the time. This even includes claiming on behalf of a deceased’s estate.

“Given how expensive care can be, these claims are often for significant sums. For example, a claim for three years of fees could result in a reimbursement of more than £100,000.”

Local councils can also contribute towards the cost of care, but typically only for people who possess less than £23,250 in capital, including savings, properties, etc. However, families can be required to pay a ‘top-up fee’ even when receiving council funding.

Robert said: “This can be a very complex area, and many people are not properly prepared to deal with it because of a lack of information.

“To add to the difficulties, the statistics show that the pressure on the social care system is set to increase exponentially, since people are now living longer than ever before.

“I would strongly advise anyone who is expecting to deal with social care needs in the near future, or anyone who already is, to seek advice on their situation.”

Walker Foster Solicitors boast a highly-trained team, dedicated to providing the best legal services to clients at a fair price. For more information, contact the Walker Foster team in Ilkley on 01943 609969.   They also have offices in Skipton, Barnoldswick and Silsden.

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