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PIP and the Shared Life Scheme

 

Ruth_T
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Volunteer adviser, Corby Borough Welfare Rights & CAB

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We have been asked for assistance with an appeal against a decision that the client cannot be paid PIP daily living component because of the nature of her accommodation.  DWP have cited PIP Regs reg 28, and are treating the client as a care home resident.  PIP mobility component remains in payment.

The client lives in her carer’s home under the Shared Life Scheme, and the carer receives payment from the local authority.  The client has a proper tenancy agreement and receives housing benefit.

We have asked the local authority for the statutory basis of the Shared Life Scheme, and for details as to how it is funded, but they were unable to provide that information.

Does anyone have experience of the Shared Life Scheme, or know anything about the way it is funded?

     
Dan Manville
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Mental health, Wolverhampton CC Welfare Rights

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Is this Shared Lives?

The fact that Housing Benefit is in payment should be enough to put to bed any concerns that it might be res’ care. The council’s contribution comes from the same budget that general care funding comes from; direct payments and the like.

     
HB Anorak
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Reg 28 is made under s85 of the WRA 2012.  A prerequisite for s85 to bite is that the “person is a resident of a care home” - without that, the funding of services provisions listed in Reg 28 aren’t engaged in the first place.

Section 85(3) defines a care home as “an establishment that provides accommodation together with nursing or personal care”.  This form of words is borrowed directly from s3 of the Care Standards Act 2000.  The 2012 Act does not specifically reference the 2000 Act; nevertheless I think my first argument would be that since the definition exactly matches that in the 2000 Act then the registration status of the accommodation determines whether it is a care home for PIP purposes.

Failing that, the words I have emphasised in bold ought to exclude shared lives from the definition: a family home is not an “establishment”, nor are the care and accommodation provided “together” as a package.

The whole point of shared lives is that it is legally and qualitatively different from residential care.  It won’t be registered by CQC as a care home because it doesn’t match the s3 definition of a care home, therefore it doesn’t match the s85 definition either.

     
Ruth_T
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Volunteer adviser, Corby Borough Welfare Rights & CAB

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Grateful thanks for the helpful responses.