|Long title||An Act to make provision to reform the law relating to care and support for adults and the law relating to support for carers; to make provision about safeguarding adults from abuse or neglect; to make provision about care standards; to establish and make provision about Health Education England; to establish and make provision about the Health Research Authority; to make provision about integrating care and support with health services; and for connected purposes|
|Citation||2014 c. 23|
|Introduced by||Frederick Curzon, 7th Earl Howe |
9 May 2013
|Territorial extent||England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland|
|Royal assent||14 May 2014|
|Commencement||7 July 2014, 15 July 2014 and 1 October 2014|
Status: Current legislation
|History of passage through Parliament|
|Text of statute as originally enacted|
The Care Act 2014 is an Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom that received royal assent on 14 May 2014, after being introduced on 9 May 2013. The main purpose of the act was to overhaul the existing 60-year-old legislation regarding social care in England. The Care Act 2014 sets out in one place, local authorities’ duties in relation to assessing people’s needs and their eligibility for publicly funded care and support.
The Act received the consensus of the three main political parties in the UK during its passage through parliament. The Act was implemented following substantial public consultation but was criticised for some of the funding reforms included within the Act.
The Care Act is a lengthy act (129 clauses in the main part of the Act) addressing many issues: from a review of the public consultation 107 recommendations were made of which many were adopted. However some of the major changes are:
- That local councils now have a duty to promote the well-being of carers; previously their duty of care was only made to the users of the care services;
- That anyone receiving care and support from a regulated provider which has been arranged by the council will be covered by the Human Rights Act 1998;
- That councils must enable users or potential users of care services to access independent financial advice on their care funding;
- The introduction of a new appeals system for care users to appeal against council decisions on eligibility to care and care funding;
- Guidance on safeguarding vulnerable adults, which in England had taken the form of the 2000 No Secrets guidance, was replaced by statutory guidance issued under the legislation.
Regulations made under the Care Act specify that a permanent resident of a care home is not eligible for local authority financial assistance if they have capital exceeding £23,250 in value. This limit still applies in 2019.
Cap on care costs
Sections 15-16 (not yet implemented) specify that local authorities may not charge more in total for meeting eligible care needs than a specified amount which is to be reviewed annually. Once the cap is reached, any further social care needed by the individual is to be provided free of charge. The cap on care costs was due to be in effect from April 2016, but this was delayed to April 2020, by an announcement by Alistair Burt, the Minister of State for Care and Support, on 17 July 2015. The introduction of the cap had been passed into law as part of the Care Act 2014 during the Coalition government, and implementation of this part of the law from 2016 onwards had been accepted by all main political parties during the general election of 2015.
Changes introduced as a result of Covid-19
In January 2020 the United Kingdom witnessed their first case of Covid-19, a current (as of time of writing) global pandemic which has resulted in millions of worldwide cases and deaths. The illness is a viral respiratory disease and thus is more dangerous for people with underlying health conditions if they catch it compared to a healthy person of the same age, ethnicity and gender. Emergency legislation was created by the government known as the Adult Social Care Action Plan. It has four main goals which aimed to reduce the impact of Covid-19 on the Adult Social Care sector. Section 4.6 and 4.7 of the Adult Social Care Action Plan states how The Coronavirus Act 2020 amends the Care Act 2014. This means that the legal duties outlined in the Care Act 2014 do not have to be fulfilled during the pandemic. Mencap, a leading charity for people with learning disabilities found that 69% of people with learning disabilities who participated in their survey had their care reduced or removed altogether. Through overruling the agreed outcomes through individuals agreed care plans thousands of disabled people are going without their care as a direct result to policy changes.
- "Thursday, 9 May 2013 - House of Lords". Parliament of the United Kingdom. Retrieved 5 September 2014.
- "Bill stages — Care Act 2014". Parliament of the United Kingdom. Retrieved 5 September 2014.
- "The Care Act 2014 (Commencement No.1) Order 2014". The Stationery Office. Retrieved 5 September 2014.
- "The Care Act: Assessment and eligibility". www.scie.org.uk. Retrieved 2019-10-29.
- Brindle, David (5 June 2014). "What are the most important changes to the Care Act?". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 17 September 2014.
- "The Care Bill explained: Including a response to consultation and pre-legislative scrutiny on the Draft Care and Support Bill" (PDF). Parliament of the United Kingdom. Retrieved 17 September 2014.
- Care and support statutory guidance, accessed 1 September 2017
- The Care and Support (Charging and Assessment of Resources) Regulations 2014, section 12, accessed 9 June 2019
- Haynes, L., More people face paying for residential care as charging thresholds frozen for ninth year, published 31 January 2019, accessed 9 June 2019
- "Care Act 2014" (PDF).
- Royal Borough of Kingston on Thames, Care Act: A cap on care costs from April 2016 (delayed until 2020), accessed 31 December 2018
- "delay-in-the-implementation-of-the-cap-on-care-costs". www.gov.uk. 17 July 2015. Retrieved 4 February 2019.
- https://www.pharmaceutical-technology.com/features/coronavirus-affected-uk-ncov-measures-impact/. Missing or empty
- https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-adult-social-care-action-plan/covid-19-our-action-plan-for-adult-social-care#contents/. Missing or empty
- Accessed 15/12/2020/ https://www.mencap.org.uk/press-release/i-dont-know-what-day-it-or-what-weather-outside-social-care-cuts-people-learning Accessed 15/12/2020/ Check
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