I’ve written before about how I think it’s unfair the Government can decide that one person should lose all their worldly assets to pay for care home fees, while another person has to forfeit nothing. It should be fair, but once again, it’s another sign that those who work hardest don’t always get the rewards they deserve.
In how to protect your assets from the Government I explained that care home fees were applicable to people who owned their own house, whereas, people who had nothing got the same level of care for free from the State. But, can the Government really take your house to pay for care homes fees?
Government Care Home Fees
It’s often said, that because I dealt with my debts via bankruptcy that I can’t complain about financial injustices – I just walked away from my debt. Well, two wrongs don’t make a right. Just because in bankruptcy you don’t repay 100% of the debt, doesn’t mean financial injustices don’t exist. It means I’m alert to the errors in the system.
I’m not proud of entering bankruptcy but you’re either bankrupt or you’re not. I had no assets, no job, little income and no prospects of repaying the debt after I was made redundant. I didn’t have any other choice. But, in society we’re penalising people who have worked hard and now need care and support.
The Government expects people who own their home to sell their property and pay for care home costs. This will mean no inheritance for family members and a lifetime of saving money and squirreling away the mortgage repayments to simply be squandered in a matter of years through social care in a care home. If you don’t own your house and have lived off Government benefits all your life then you get the same level of care for free… again!
Avoid Care Home Fees
I say, it’s time to help people get a fair share in the UK. I believe people should look after themselves and not rely on the Government but in this instance what should we do? Throw our elderly who can’t afford care onto the street? Well, no. But similarly, this ethos doesn’t make me want to repay my mortgage any faster! It’ll just go towards my care home costs.
Instead, I’ve spoken to my financial advisor and I can put my property in trust. This means the property cannot be used by the Government as an asset which I have to release before they will cover future care home costs. I will still remain as the decision maker of the property but my family will be protected should the worst happen and I have to go into a care home.
This is a fundamental problem in the UK – equality doesn’t exist. We end up striving to care only for ourselves and the system eventually collapses. With an aging population and couples waiting till their 30’s to start having children, we’re going to have increased pressure on the care home system and properties will have to be sold. If there is no equality why would you sell your home to pay for care, when another person doesn’t have to?
Thank you to How To Make Will and Legacy Planning for their help.