Direct payments - your questions answered
Do I have to have Direct Payments?
No, it is entirely your choice if you feel Direct Payments is appropriate for you. You can stop Direct Payments at any time if you no longer feel it is meeting your care needs.
Will Direct Payments affect my benefits?
No. Direct Payments are ignored in calculating social security benefits such as Income Support, Family Credit, Housing and Council tax Benefits. The Inland Revenue also disregards Direct Payments when working out your taxable income.
Will I have to complete tax returns?
No, Calderdale Council offers a full payroll service that will calculate your tax every quarter and liaise with the Inland Revenue on your behalf.
Will there be a lot of paperwork / forms to fill in?
When you first start Direct Payments you will have some forms that need filling in. The Support Planning Team will support you with this. Once your Direct Payments are up and running, there should be very minimal paperwork to complete.
How do I account for my Direct Payments?
As part of having Direct Payments you will be expected to audit the account every quarter. The audit will evidence where and how you have spent the Direct Payments money. The Support Planning Team will support you to complete your audit.
Can I employ a relative?
You cannot employ a relative / partner if they live in the same house as you.
Can I pay my Personal Assistant with cash?
No, Personal Assistants must be paid either by cheque or transferring the payment through the bank, by Internet banking for example. All Personal Assistants must be registered with the Inland Revenue and will pay Tax and National Insurance on their earnings where applicable.
Can I meet with other people who are receiving Direct Payments?
We will invite you to come to Recipients Meetings where you can talk to other people receiving Direct Payments.
Will I have to pay any charges to the Council to have Direct Payments?
You will be assessed to see if you need to pay a contribution towards the cost of the help you receive. Your costs will be deducted from the amount of the Direct Payment that you receive. For example, if you receive £100 of Direct Payment and your charge is £20 then you will receive £80 in your Direct Payment account.
Can I have Direct Payments and care services from the Council?
Some of your Care Package can be provided using Direct Payments and some can be organised by the Council. This is known as a Joint Package of Care.