Eligibility for Adult Social Care services

The Care Act came into force in April 2015, and changed the way we decide if you're eligible for care and support services. 

Your needs are considered eligible when all three of the following apply to you:

  • your needs are due to a physical or mental impairment or illness
  • your physical or mental impairment or illness affects your ability to achieve two or more ‘specified outcomes’
  • your wellbeing is significantly affected by the inability to achieve these outcomes.​

The eligibility for Adult Social Care services leaflet (PDF 217KB) explains how decisions are made about who Adult Social Care can and cannot help.

Carers and Eligibility

Carers can be eligible for support in their own right. The Council complies with the national eligibility criteria which sets a minimum threshold for carer support, and provides transparency on what level of need is eligible. The assessment is used to identify how a person’s needs affect their ability to achieve relevant outcomes, and how this impacts on their wellbeing.

In carrying out an assessment to determine a carers eligible needs, the Council must apply the following established national three part test; whether;

1) the needs arise as a consequence of providing necessary care for an adult; and whether;

2) the carer is unable to do any of the following as a result of their caring duties;

  • carrying out any caring responsibilities the carer has for a child
  • providing care to other persons for whom the carer provides care
  • maintaining a habitable home environment in the carer’s home (whether or not this is also the home of the adult needing care)
  • managing and maintaining nutrition
  • developing and maintaining family or other personal relationships
  • engaging in work, training, education or volunteering
  • making use of the necessary facilities or services in the local
  • community, including recreational facilities or services
  • engaging in recreational activities; and whether

3) as a consequence of that fact there is, or there is likely to be, a significant impact on the carer’s wellbeing.

A carer’s needs are only eligible where they meet all three of these conditions, or if a carers physical or mental health has, or is at risk of deteriorating due to providing necessary care.

Achieving specified outcomes

When considering your eligibility for care and support services, we look at ‘outcomes’.

This means we look at the impact of your physical or mental impairment on your daily life. We measure this by checking if you're unable to achieve two or more of the following tasks:

  • managing and maintaining nutrition
  • maintaining personal hygiene
  • managing toilet needs
  • being appropriately clothed
  • being able to make use of your home safely
  • maintaining a habitable home environment
  • developing and maintaining personal relationships
  • accessing and engaging in work, training, education or volunteering
  • making use of facilities or services in the local community including public transport and recreational facilities or services
  • carrying out caring responsibilities if you have a child.

We may measure your needs against other outcomes.

We also consider whether your needs may change, by looking at your care and support needs over the last year.

Needs assessments

We will carry out a needs assessment for people who appear to be in need of care and support, regardless of their financial status or whether we think that their needs will be eligible. 

To arrange a needs assessment contact Access Point, our contact centre for Adult Social Care.

What happens next

If you've had an assessment and we find that you are eligible for services, we will provide you with a copy of the decision.

We will then confirm with you:

  • which of your needs are to be met
  • how those needs will be met.

We'll review your eligible needs on a yearly basis.

If you're not eligible, we'll provide an explanation in writing to tell you why.

Paying for care and support

  • If you're eligible, you're entitled to support from us (subject to your financial circumstances) if one of the following applies:
  • the type of care and support you need is already provided free of charge
  • you can't afford to pay for the full cost of your care
  • you ask us to meet your needs
  • you don't have mental capacity, and have no-one else to arrange care for you.