The Care Act came into force in April 2015 and replaced laws around care and gave new rights for carers. It significantly changed the way local authorities carried out assessments to determine what people were eligible for.
The act is mainly for adult unpaid carers who are caring for an adult - people over the age of 18 years old. Young carers (aged under 18) and adults caring for disabled children are covered in the Children and Families Act 2014.
What rights do I have as a carer?
Carers are entitled to a "Carers Assessment". Local authorities have duty to assess the support needs of carers, and these needs must be given the same recognition as the needs of people being cared for. Previously, there was no duty on local authorities to provide an assessment. Once an assessment has been carried out, if eligible, there may be support service for carers.
See our Practical Support section for information about arranging care and support.
"Well-being" and the Care Act
The Act introduced a duty for local authorities to consider a person's well-being when making decisions - for carers and for those needing care and support. For example, now local authorities should now consider a carers well-being when deciding their eligibility for support services to help them in their caring role.
What will happen to my disabled childs' care when they turn 18?
The Care Act has introduced duty on local authorities to carry out Child’s Needs Assessments (CNA) for young people where there is ‘likely to be a need for care and support’ after they reach 18 (even if this will not amount to them having eligible needs). The CNA should look at what support services a young person might be eligible for when they turn 18. The CNA should also include a predicted personal budget, in order for young people to plan for their future.
Young people or their carers can request a CNA at any time before a young person turns 18. The Care Act also ensures that if the local authority has not carried out a CNA, then they must continue to provide support services to the young adult until a either a decision has been made that they do not qualify for services under the Care Act, or the care they have been assessed as needing is in place.
For more information about disabled children moving into adult services, visit Contact a Family website here.
Where can I find out more information?
For more information about the Care Act 2014:
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