Disability related expenditure (DRE) is the financial cost that an adult incurs, specifically because they are disabled or have health problems. The local authority must take this expenditure into account in financial assessments to make sure that people who pay towards their care and support have enough money to live on (see Charging and Financial Assessment chapter).
Examples of DRE include additional costs for heating if someone feels the cold because of their impairment and needs extra heating to keep warm and additional laundry costs for someone who is incontinent. See Appendix 1: Disability Related Expenditures and Sources of Evidence for further information.
2. Eligibility for Disability Related Expenditure
To qualify for DRE the adult must be in receipt of the care component of Disability Living Allowance, Personal Independence Payment (Care) or Attendance Allowance.
Their assessment and care and support plan should also identify disabilities or medical conditions which demonstrate their need for DRE.
The local authority should assess the adult’s DRE as part of their financial assessment.
3. Financial Assessment
The adult or their carer needs to be able to tell staff at the financial assessment meeting:
- the costs they have due to being disabled or having a health condition;
- how much these costs are;
- provider receipts or any other evidence of these costs (see Appendix 1: Examples of Disability Related Expenditure and Sources of Evidence).
When considering DRE, the local authority will:
- look at the information provided, including the receipts and any other evidence;
- check to see if the costs provided relate to their care needs as specified in their care and support plan (see Care and Support Planning chapter);
- check to see if any income the adult receives already covers these costs.
If the adult provides the evidence within 28 days, any reduction in charge will be backdated to the date of the assessment.
If the adult provides the evidence after 28 days, any reduction will only be made from the date the last supporting evidence was received.
The local authority will let the adult know the outcome of the assessment in writing, including explanations of:
- how the assessment has been carried out;
- what the charge will be;
- how it should be paid; and
- the reason for any fluctuation in charges.
4. Appeals and Complaints
If the adult or their carer/ representative does not agree with the DRE amount they can appeal.
The Charging and Financial Assessment Team should examine the adult’s DRE calculations, to see if the amount is correct.
If the outcome of the appeal is that the correct amount has been calculated, but the adult or their representative is still not satisfied with the decision, they can ask the local authority’s Decision Making Panel to review their case. The Financial Assessment Team will let them know the process by which to do this. The panel is made up of managers from both financial, social work and legal areas.
If the adult or their representative are not satisfied with the panel’s decision, they can make a complaint (see Complaints chapter).
Appendix 1: Examples of Disability Related Expenditure and Sources of Evidence
|Personal hygiene||Incontinence sheets / pads /pants||Receipts or invoices from supplier|
|Laundry costs||Increased washing and ironing due to impairment or medical condition, or specialist washing powders||Details required about number of loads of washing each week|
|Privately purchased care||Care costs not met by the local authority, including night care||Invoices or bills from the provider|
|Treatment to support wellbeing / prevent or reduce needs||Massage, hydrotherapy Invoices or bills from the provider|
|Specific diet||Additional food costs specific to health needs||Receipts or invoices|
|Purchase and maintenance of equipment||Equipment includes hoists, powered and turning beds, scooter / wheelchair and stair lifts||Invoices or bills from provider (excluding any local authority funding)|
|Community alarm||Neck pendant with which to contact call centre in an emergency||Invoices / bills from the provider|
|Gardening maintenance||Pruning, weeding and mowing||Invoices / bills from the provider|
|Heating||Higher heating costs due to impairment||Bills from energy provider / bank statements|
|Home shopping delivery||Supermarket delivery or paying somebody to deliver shopping||Receipts|
|House maintenance||DIY, repair and general maintenance||Invoices / bills from the provider|
|Transport||Taxis, petrol or local transport costs due to impairment||Amounts over Disability Living Allowance/Personal Independence Payment Mobility considered together with receipts / tickets|