A Personal Budget is a set amount of money allocated to an individual by their council to meet their assessed care and support needs. The Personal Budget can be managed by the council, be paid as a Direct Payment, or be managed by an Individual Service Fund. The amount of money in their Personal Budget is worked out by the local council based on the individual’s care needs assessment.
What is a Direct Payment?
Direct Payments are when an individual’s Personal Budget is paid directly to them to manage themselves.
Direct Payments can be managed by the individual or a third party such as a family member or friend or by an organisation which may charge a small fee to do so
They can only be spend their direct payment on what has been agreed in their Care and Support Plan. This may include, support provided by a care agency, employing a personal assistant, and other support services and equipment.
(Equipment may be a laptop - for someone who has social inclusion needs)
Payments are made into the designated account by the council every 4 weeks, with any assessed contribution deducted at source. A Direct Payment Agreement must be signed by the individual or third party before payments can be made.
How can I receive my Direct Payment?
There are different types of designated accounts - these are:
- prepaid card account provided by the council - this is the same as a debit card and is the preferred method as it is very easy to set up, removes a lot of the administrative burden from the service users and is easier for providers to get paid
- paid to a third party through a managed funds service who will manage the money on the individual’s behalf
- paid into a separate bank account which has been set up solely for the use of the Direct Payment
For more information, click here.