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Direct payments for social care

Instead of receiving care services direct from the council, direct payments mean you can choose the care services you want with an agreed budget.

Direct payments are a budget the council gives you that cover for some or all of the costs of your social care needs.

With direct payments you have the freedom to arrange your own care and support – like hiring an assistant or buying equipment.

They won’t affect your benefits.

How to get direct payments

Direct payments are only available after a needs assessment

If after your assessment someone will speak to you about whether direct payments will be available to you, and what your options are.

This may involve creating you a personal care plan.

Find out more about direct payments on the NHS website.

What direct payments are used for

If after an assessment, it’s decided you need some extra support, a plan will be agreed between you and the social care team.

This will set out the services that can best support you and how much you should spend on them.

  • employing a personal assistant to help with household tasks or your care
  • buying services from a private care provider
  • Helping you to stay in touch with friends and family or build new social networks
  • paying toward leisure, education or social activities in the community
  • Buying support to give your unpaid or family carer a break from their caring role

Get support using direct payments

If you need more information about direct payments, you can contact us today to ask about:

  • working out costs
  • how to employ people
  • writing job descriptions
  • keeping records
  • any other questions you have

Contact us


Telephone 020 7527 8164

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Data protection: We will handle your personal information in line with the Data Protection Act 1998 and in accordance with the council’s Fair Processing Notice.