Information for professionals

Useful information for professionals working with carers.

One-off carers' payments

From April 2017, there have been changes in eligibility rules which mean that only carers having the highest level of needs are awarded a one-off payment of £300. See news for more details.

Previously, carers could apply for a GP grant or carers' grant. However, since the Care Act came into effect in April 2015, carers no longer apply for a grant. Instead, they can complete a carers' assessment which may result in a carers' support plan and one-off carer personal payment. Please note: carers' assessments do not necessarily result in a financial payment.

The outcome of their carers' assessment will only be based on the information that is included in the assessment, so it is important that carers detail what they do in their role and the true impact it has on them. Other information we have on record will not be considered so carers should assume we know nothing about their situation when completing the assessment.

How to complete a carers' assessment

The preferred option is for carers to complete an online carers' assessment via our website.  If they cannot do this themselves, are they able to do this with the assistance of a friend or family member?

Professionals assisting carers completing an assessment are highly effective in recording an accurate account of the situation and how it impacts the carer. If a professional is able to assist the carer with their form then it would be strongly advised as generally they will be able to identify how their role impacts them more accurately and provide details of their role and cared-for conditions.

Alternatively, Carers Oxfordshire can complete the assessment with the carer over the phone or we can arrange for an outreach worker to assist the carer completing the assessment in their house or designated venue.

We do not generally send out paper copies of the carers' assessment. These take longer to process and if any fields are left blank then this can have a major impact on the outcome of the carers' assessment.

Using the online carers' assessment form

The carers' assessment form takes up to 60 mins to complete and there is an option to save the form and return to it at a later date. There are additional notes regarding the form before you complete it that are worth reading.

You will have to complete the 'human test' before being able to start the form, inputting the two words. To start the form you will need to log in or register, this is to allow you to save the form and return to it at a later date.  It is not possible to start the assessment without doing this.

Forms will be saved for 30 days from the day when you start the assessment. Each time you press save you should be emailed a link which will allow you to complete your assessment.

Once finished, you can save a copy by clicking on the print icon on the screen, on the print box that opens you will need to scroll to the far left, select 'Adobe PDF', 'print' and then it will give you the option to save this form to your computer.

Please note that when printing or saving these forms that some of the text boxes do not expand. If there is a lot of text included in the free text boxes, this may not be visible on the printed or saved copy.


Carers' reviews

If a carer completes a carers' assessment and is assessed as being eligible for support, they will then be reviewed 12 months from their previous assessment. We will write to the carer and explain they are due for review and prompt them to either go online and complete the carers' review form, or advise them to call us and we will complete this over the phone.

The carers' review form will only take a few minutes to complete and its purpose is to identify if the carer or cared for's needs have changed over the last 12 months.

The form will result in one of the following three results:

  • No longer caring, the carer states they are no longer providing care and asked if they wish to provide any additional information. We will close our involvement with the carer.
  • Minimal change to carers' needs and minimal change to the impact on the carer's health and wellbeing since last year's assessment. The carer will not have to complete a new carers' assessment, but due to the changes in eligibility criteria, carers will receive less money than last year and some will not be awarded a personal payment.
  • Significant change to either the carer's needs or health and wellbeing since last year's assessment. The carer will be asked to complete a new carers' assessment if this is the outcome of their review form. If this is not done within 1-2 months we will close our involvement with the carer.

If they are no longer caring: eligibility for a carers' personal payment

If the cared for passes away or goes into a home, the carer may still be eligible for their carers' personal payment. They must have already been awarded a payment/completed a carers' assessment when they were actively caring. We will not accept a carers' assessment with information of a historical caring role that is not being performed at the time the carers' assessment is completed.

To receive their carers personal payment

If a carer completes a carers' assessment and is awarded a carers' personal payment, they will be sent paperwork informing them of this and this will include a direct payments contract. The contract must be physically completed with bank details, sort code and signed by the carer and a witness.

This form should be returned within 28 days to ensure they receive this payment.

If paperwork is not received by the carer they should contact our team. Carers' assessments will be processed within 28 days, so they should find out the outcome within this time.

Usually, upon our team receiving a completed direct payments contract, the money should arrive in their account within 28 days, although this can be longer during busy periods. If carers do not have money in their accounts after 28 days they can call our team to check on the progress of this payment.

Carers should return this contract to the address on the form, if they send it anywhere else then it may delay their payment.

Disagreeing with the decision not to award a carers' personal payment

If a carer disagrees with the decision not to award them a personal payment they can contact our team and request an exception. We advise they do this in writing explaining in detail what they do in their role, the condition of the cared-for and why they need support, how their role impacts them and why they feel they should have a payment.

Some carers provide limited detail to their role and how it impacts them in their assessment. Professionals can provide additional information regarding an exceptions request or can complete a new carers' assessment should the carer have completed the original form by themselves. If completing a new assessment I would advise you contact our team to ensure we are aware of the situation first, having multiple assessments for one carer over  a short period of time can cause confusion regarding eligibility at our end.