Personal budgets and "legal rewards"

Jenny Hurst made this Freedom of Information request to Bromley Borough Council

The request was successful.

From: Jenny Hurst

6 January 2011

Dear Bromley Borough Council,

I am interested in finding out about the Councils opinion of “legal
rewards” or “thank you payments” for people on personal budgets
/direct payments? (This is where someone is able to buy the
occasional gift/ meal/ voucher etc for someone providing unpaid
assistance – such as a neighbour who goes in to help a person with
their correspondence or a friend who runs errands for the disabled
person).

Are people allowed to use some of/ their entire personal budget in
this way?

If not - what are the reasons for the council not allowing personal
budgets to be used in this way?

If yes:

1. Is this decided on an individual basis or is this something that
anyone could incorporate into the support plan?

2. Is there generic guidance as to the maximum that can be used as
a “legal reward”, for example a certain percentage of the PB or a
certain cash amount per week/month/year? What is this percentage
/maximum cash amount?

3. Are there things that a person can definitely NOT buy as a legal
reward? (According to guidelines, PBs can’t be used for buying
food, alcohol, bills, gambling etc – however a disabled person
might want to buy a friend a bottle of wine to say thank you, or
pay for a coffee and a sandwich if the friend helps them to go to a
social event, or to pay for petrol once in a while if the
friend/neighbour drives them to the shops regularly?)

4. What restrictions do you place on the ways people can give a
“legal reward”? For example, they can only give a gift voucher, not
cash or that the person has to call each time, in advance and give
justification of the type of payment/ payment in kind that they
propose using etc. Or is there complete freedom once the concept of
“legal reward” is in the support plan?

5. How do you ask people to account for their use of legal
rewards?(Do you ask the PB recipient to provide full details of the
person they would like to “reward” and get a signed receipt, or is
it just accepted that the helper is actually receiving the reward.

6. What are the advantages / disadvantages of allowing PB
recipients to use their PB for “legal rewards”.

Yours faithfully,

Jenny Hurst

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From: Freedom of Information (Group)
Bromley Borough Council

6 January 2011

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From: Longhurst, Jane
Bromley Borough Council

24 January 2011

Dear Ms Hurst

Thank you for your enquiry dated 6 January 2011.

The London Borough of Bromley does not currently include "legal rewards"
in the calculation of a person's personal budget. People who meet our
eligibility criteria have the right to direct payments, in order to
purchase services to meet their needs.

The use of "legal rewards" is not considered part of this framework.

I trust that this response is satisfactory but should you require any
further clarification then please do not hesitate to contact me.

Best wishes

Jane Longhurst J
Customer Service Manager
Adult & Community Services
Desk no 108, Floor 3, Stockwell
( 020 8461 7792
š <[1]mailto:[email address]>
Website <[2]http://bk.bromley.gov.uk/>

P Please consider the environment - do you really need to print this
email?

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www.bromley.gov.uk

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confidential in that it is intended solely for the use of the recipient,
the use of the information by disclosure, copying or distribution is
prohibited and may be unlawful.
The London Borough of Bromley monitors the content of emails sent and
received via its network for the purposes of ensuring compliance with its
policies and procedures.
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