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Care costs and deliberate deprivation of assets

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Dear Lancashire County Council,

I am interested in the how you are using deprivation of assets powers (as provided in Regulation 22(1) of the Care and Support (Charging and Assessment of Resources) Regulations 2014) in relation to financial assessments for care costs. Please provide responses to all of the following questions. If that is not possible within the limits of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 or because you do not hold the specific data requested, then please still provide all possible answers.

(1) For each of the last five years, how many financial assessments have you undertaken in relation to care costs?

(2) For each of the last five years, what is the average time taken to conclude financial assessments?

(3) For each of the last five years, in how many financial assessments did you conclude there had been a deliberate deprivation of assets?

(4) For each of the last five years, what is the overall sum you have recovered through identifying deliberately deprived assets?

(5) Do all of your communicated decisions regarding financial assessments inform the applicant of: (a) any right of appeal or review; and (b) their right to contact the Local Government Ombudsman?

(6) For each of the last five years, how many appeals have there been from financial assessment decisions?

(7) Please can you provide any internal training materials used which relate to deliberate deprivation of assets?

Best wishes,

Joe

Freedom of Information, Lancashire County Council

Dear Mr Tomlinson,

 

Request for Information Under the Freedom of Information Act (2000)

 

We are writing to acknowledge receipt of your enquiry of 03.01.20 in which
you request the disclosure of information.

 

We can confirm that your enquiry will now be assigned to an officer who
will commence a search for the information you require and they will
respond in due course. The deadline date for issuing you with a full
response is 31.01.20. We will endeavour to provide a response well in
advance of this date, however, should we envisage any delays, or require
more details from you, we will contact you immediately.

 

If you have any queries about the above, please do not hesitate to contact
us, quoting ref 984.13 (NH2).

 

Yours sincerely,

 

On Behalf of the Information Governance Team Lancashire County Council PO
Box 78 County Hall Preston

PR1 8XJ

 

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Freedom of Information, Lancashire County Council

Dear Mr Tomlinson

 

Request for information under the Freedom of Information Act 2000

 

Further to your request for information, made under the provisions of the
above Act, please see below our response, please note, to keep within the
18 hour timescales, we have only been able to provide information for the
past 3 years.

 

Request:

 

I am interested in the how you are using deprivation of assets powers (as
provided in Regulation 22(1) of the Care and Support (Charging and
Assessment of Resources) Regulations 2014) in relation to financial
assessments for care costs. Please provide responses to all of the
following questions. If that is not possible within the limits of the
Freedom of Information Act 2000 or because you do not hold the specific
data requested, then please still provide all possible answers.

 

(1) For each of the last five years, how many financial assessments have
you undertaken in relation to care costs?

 

(2) For each of the last five years, what is the average time taken to
conclude financial assessments?

 

(3) For each of the last five years, in how many financial assessments did
you conclude there had been a deliberate deprivation of assets?

 

(4) For each of the last five years, what is the overall sum you have
recovered through identifying deliberately deprived assets?

 

(5) Do all of your communicated decisions regarding financial assessments
inform the applicant of: (a) any right of appeal or review; and (b) their
right to contact the Local Government Ombudsman?

 

(6) For each of the last five years, how many appeals have there been from
financial assessment decisions?

 

(7) Please can you provide any internal training materials used which
relate to deliberate deprivation of assets?

 

Response:

 

1.    2016/17 - 19522 assessments

2017/18 - 20721 assessments

2018/19 - 18901 assessments

 

2.    2017/18 62 Days

2018/19 54 Days

2019/20 35 Days

 

3.    2016/17 39 cases

2017/18 26 cases

2018/19 37 cases

 

4.    2016/17 £6679.89 p/w  £347354 p/yr

2017/18 £4627.81 p/w  £219956 p/yr

2018/19 £8089      p/w  £421673 p/yr

 

 

5.    Leaflet - Financial Implications of moving into a residential or
nursing care home is given to all service users at time of social care
needs assessment which details right of appeal.  Is also available on
Lancashire's website.

 

Factsheet – Lancashire County Council's charging arrangements for when you
receive services in your own home called Non Residential care services is
given to all service users at time of social care needs assessment which
details right of appeal.  Is also available on Lancashire's website.

 

When an notification of appointment to complete financial assessment is
sent to services users for both Residential and Non Residential care a
copy of the above relevant factsheet/leaflet is included.

 

In our appeal response letters we advise if a service users remains
unhappy about the financial assessment they can make a formal complaint
and the details of how to make a complaint and who to are included within
the letter.

 

In our complaint response letters we advise if a service user remains
unhappy they can contact the Local Government Social Care Ombudsman and
the details of how to contact the LGSCO are included with the letter.

 

The Local Government Social Care Ombudsman advises a service user that
they first need to complain to the Authority, to give them chance to
respond.  Hence why we always include the LGSCO information in our
complaint responses.

 

The process is right to appeal to Financial Assessment Team, then the
Complaints Team then the LGSCO as detailed above.

 

6.    2016/17 12 cases

2017/18 4 cases

2018/19  6 cases

 

 

7.    The financial assessment team use The Care Act 2014 as it's training
material/guidance Section 8 Charging and financial assessment Sub Section
8.27 - 8.30 and Annex 3 – Deprivation of Assets.  We have in-house written
step by step system guides (processes) for Charging and Financial
Assessments which are Care Act 2014 compliant.

 

We operate a buddy system when training our Financial Assessment Officers
whereby newly appointed staff are paired with experienced financial
assessment officers.  We also use external trainers.

 

In the event that you wish to complain about the manner in which your
enquiry has been handled, you should write in the first instance to The
Freedom of Information Officer, Lancashire County Council, PO Box 78,
County Hall, Preston PR1 8XJ, or email
[1][Lancashire County Council request email] and the matter will be referred
to an Information Governance Manager for review and reconsideration.

 

If, after this stage, you remain dissatisfied, you have the right to refer
the matter to the Information Commissioner, whose contact details are as
follows:

 

The Information Commissioner

Wycliffe House

Water Lane

Wilmslow

Cheshire

SK9 5AF

 

Tel: 0303 123 1113

Email: [2][email address]

Website: [3]http://www.ico.gov.uk

 

 

If you have any queries regarding any of the above, or you require any
additional information, please do not hesitate to contact our team.

Yours sincerely

On Behalf of the Information Governance Team

Lancashire County Council

T:  0300 123 6701

W: [4]www.lancashire.gov.uk

 

 

 

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