In September 2001, the Scottish Government introduced legislation to provide free personal care for those who were assessed as requiring it and were over 65. “Personal care” means care which relates to day to day tasks and the needs of the person cared for (for example, washing, eating etc.).
1st April 2019 sees the introduction of “Frank’s Law”, which will broaden the availability of free personal care to those under 65. This means that those living with early onset dementia, Parkinson’s Disease, Motor Neurone Disease, cancer or other life limiting conditions will qualify for free personal care.
Each local authority must assess the needs of residents in its area and provide such social care services as are deemed to be required for the individual. This includes the provision of assessment for free personal care. The assessment will cover various aspects of your life with which you may require assistance, for example, personal hygiene, continence management, food and diet, problems with immobility, assistance with medications and personal assistance (i.e. to get up and to go to bed). Until now, those under 65 had to fund their personal care requirements from their own funds.
The rate of free personal care will increase to £177 per week from 1st April.
For those living in care homes and who have been assessed as needing nursing care services, the local authority will pay an additional £80 per week (from 1st April 2019) directly to the care provider.
“Frank’s Law” was as a result of campaigning by former Dundee United footballer, Frank Kopel’s widow, following his diagnosis with vascular dementia at the age of 59. Sadly Frank passed away in 2013, but his wife Amanda has campaigned since then to highlight the discrimination those under 65 faced previously.
Should you require any additional information on free personal care or other related matters, for example care costs, planning for your future by preparing Wills, Powers of Attorney or Advanced Medical Directives, please do not hesitate to contact a member of our Private Client Team who will be happy to assist.