You’re an individual You deserve to be treated like one Mayfair Care Services Limited  Mayfair House  9 Meppel Avenue  Canvey Island  Essex  SS8 9RZ Tel No.:  01268-696055  Fax No.:  01268-694724  E-Mail: Direct Payments: A quick guide We are receiving an ever increasing number of enquiries requesting information regarding the widely promoted Direct Payments scheme. This scheme exists to allow people the freedom of choice. The freedom to choose your own care provider and the care package best suited to your needs.  Therefore we have provided below a summary of what direct payments are and who would be entitled to them. What are Direct Payments? Direct payments are a local council payment given to you to buy the services that your social worker has assessed that you need.  They allow independence and freedom of choice to pick your own carer or choose your preferred agency rather than the council allocating a service to you. A person must be able to give their consent to receiving direct payments and be able to manage them even if they need help to do this on a day-to-day basis. Who can have Direct Payment? Almost anyone who is eligible for services from Adult Social Care or childrens services can get a direct payment this includes: o Older Adults o Parents/guardians of disabled children o Carers aged 16 and over o Adults with physical/mental/learning disabilities, sensory    impairment, long-term illness or who are frail. Who can I employ? You can choose own carer or choose home care agency. When choosing a carer the following people with be excluded unless express permission is given by your council: o Your husband, wife or partner o A close relative who lives in the same house. Also, when employing an independent carer you would effectively become an employer yourself and, as such, would be obliged to follow the current Human Resources and Health and Safety Laws, run your own payroll and have your own liability insurance. An independent advocate (such as Purple - see below) would be able to help you with these matters. Independent advice and guidance about employing an independent carer can found in this Department of Health brochure entitled “Becoming an Employer using Direct Payments”. However, if you use the services of an independent advocate (such as Purple) and a Home Care Agency (Such as Mayfair Care Services) the paperwork would be minimal. What can I use direct payments for? As a general principle, councils should let you choose how best to meet your assessed needs as long as they are satisfied that agreed support arrangements are being met. They can be used to: o Pay for help with carrying out daily living tasks, personal and    domestic tasks. i.e. by paying for a personal assistant o Help someone have a break from caring o Support someone to get out and about within their community o Help someone stay independent Record Keeping If you receive direct payments, you will need to account for the money you spend. Examples your council will expect include timesheets signed by personal assistants, or receipts for services from agencies. The council has to be satisfied that the needs for which it is giving you direct payments are being met. They should tell you how they will go about this. This may involve a visit to your home. Independent Advice Mayfair Care Services recommends Purple when deciding on whether Direct Payments are suitable for you. Purple is a charity funded organisation with a vast amount of knowledge on Direct Payments and can help you set up a Direct Payment scheme or completely manage a Direct Payment scheme on your behalf. Other independent advice and guidance can be found in this Department of Health brochure entitled "A guide to getting Direct Payments from your council".