Where can I get information and advice about social care?
Local authorities must provide you with accessible information and advice about care and support services in their area.
Information and advice should cover:
- how the social care system works in the local authority
- the types of care and support in the local area
- how to access the available care and support services
- how to get financial advice about your options
- how to raise concerns about someone who may need care and support.
In Wales, the law says that local authorities should also help you access care and support.
Will I have to pay for social care?
Unlike healthcare provided by the NHS, most social care is not free at the point of delivery. You may be asked by your local authority to pay something towards the social care you receive, depending on your financial circumstances (see our page on financial assessments). There are exceptions to this, such as section 117 aftercare, which is always free.
The rules about how local authorities charge for services are fairly complicated. But the law says that you should only be asked to pay what you can afford.
I'm a carer – do I have rights to social care?
If you're a carer, the local authority has a duty to assess and meet your needs for support (if your needs meet the eligibility criteria). See our page on carers' social care rights for more information.
This information was published in February 2018. We will revise it in 2020.