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Personal Budgets


What is a Personal Budget (PB)?

A PB is an allocation of money available to you, from Hillingdon council, which is sufficient to meet your assessed social care needs. If you are awarded a PB and you choose to manage your own care, what you can spend it on will be agreed in your support plan, with your allocated PB Support Planner.

PBs paid by councils to people considered 'eligible' under the Care Act will only cover the cost that the council would pay if they were sourcing the care themselves.

People who are eligible for Continuing Health Care Funding may also choose to have a personal health budget where they use a prepaid card to purchase the services to meet their health needs. For more information on how this works, click here.

What information can I find here?

These pages look at what a PB is, who can receive one, the benefits, how it can be used, and how it's managed including the direct payments option.

You will also find contact details for Hillingdon's Adult Social Care Team's and links to other relevant organisations.


Eligibility information

If you meet the national eligibility criteria, as defined in the Care Act 2014, then you have a legal right to receive a PB. Individuals receiving the re-ablement service are not eligible for a PB.

A PB cannot be awarded until an assessment of need has been completed and your eligibility is confirmed. Hillingdon council will carry out an assessment of your needs and confirm your eligibility.

Assessment process

The Care Act states that from April 2015, you have the right to a free needs assessment from your council. A needs assessment looks at how you are managing everyday activities such as looking after yourself, household tasks and getting out and about. A needs assessment is your opportunity to discuss with a professional what support might be best for you. It is also how the council decides if you can get support from them.

You should not be refused this assessment because of your financial situation, or because the council thinks your needs won't be high enough for you to qualify for support from them.

Resource Allocation System (RAS)

Once it has been established that your needs meet the eligibility criteria, you will be given an 'indicative budget' (an estimated budget) so that you can develop a support plan.

The support plan identifies how you will meet your needs and what support you require to assist you to achieve your goals. Your social worker/care manager or community care worker can assist you with this, if required. You will need to be quite clear on how you will be supported in the right way before you can actually use your PB.

In order for your support plan to work you need to know how much money is available for your PB. The council uses an automated tool called the Resource Allocation System (RAS) to work this out. By using scores from your needs assessment, the RAS tells you how much money should be made available in your PB and should say clearly what outcomes should be achieved through the use of that money.

If you disagree with the amount calculated using the RAS, or you think this will not meet your needs you should discuss this with your local authority care manager.

A separate financial assessment will also need to be carried out to determine whether you should make a financial contribution towards your care.


Choice and control

A PB puts you in control of the type of care you need based around what matters and works for you. This gives you the chance to have more choice and control.


A PB gives you flexibility in how your care needs are met. For example, you may want to employ a personal assistant /support worker to help you remain in your own home or you may want someone to help you attend adult education classes, or leisure activities to help you develop your skills and interests.

The various options can be discussed and agreed with your social worker/care manager or community care worker during the assessment process.

Managing your PB

Direct payments (DP)

You can choose to manage your PB yourself, as a DP via a prepaid card. If you are not able to manage the DP yourself but have support from a family member or close friend then they can be the 'Nominated person' for the DP and manage this on your behalf. Alternatively, you can choose an organisation to manage your direct payment on your behalf. The agreed amount of your PB must be adequate to meet your eligible needs. For more information, please see our DP page

Local authority

If you don't wish to manage your PB yourself, the council can do it for you based on your needs and wishes. This is called a managed personal budget. It is less flexible than a DP but you have less responsibility to arrange your support.

Mixed personal budget

You can arrange part of your support yourself using a DP and get the council to arrange the rest using a managed personal budget. If you have any questions about the different options, please talk to your social worker or care manager.

Personal Budget Support Service

For residents who need support to manage their direct payment, we offer an 'Approved Provider' list of suppliers so people can choose what support they need and who they want this support from.

All approved providers on this list have been checked by the council and the Clinical Commissioning Group to give you reassurance when purchasing services. The list will be reviewed regularly to ensure that all providers are delivering high quality care and their services and prices are up to date.

We recommend that you choose a provider from this list, although you may choose to use someone else or not have support at all. The providers on the list have been approved for one or more of the following services:

Employ a named personal assistant

A service to assist in the necessary arrangements to formally set up a PA up to and including the completion of a probationary period. Normally for situations where the individual has found their own PA.

Advertise and recruit a personal assistant

A service to assist in finding/matching PA and individual this would include DBS checks etc and setting up all employment requirements.

Ongoing support to employ a personal assistant - e.g. information and advice on employment matters

To assist with the day to day circumstances of employment from appraisal to performance concerns, annual leave, terms and conditions queries.

Payroll Service

Provision of a full payroll service for an individual directly employing a PA to include all PAYE, P60, IR submissions etc.

Managed Account (using LBH pre paid card)

Where an individual wants the flexibility of a Direct Payment and does not wish to use council or CCG commissioned services but does not wish to manage the account and liaise with providers themselves, under the direction of the individual this service will organise and arrange all of their care and ensure the record keeping meeting the local authorities requirements.

The council will ensure that anyone with a direct payment who requires support to manage their direct payment is allocated the necessary funds on their prepaid card, to pay for the support services they require. This support will need to be discussed and agreed with the relevant social work team and added to your support plan. Services should not be requested or paid for until they have been agreed by the council and added to your support plan.

The Approved Provider list gives full details of each provider, their contact details, the services they provide and the costs and can be found here.

If you would like a paper or email copy of the list, please contact the Direct Payments team on 01895 277680 or 01895 250296 or email directpaymentsteam@hillingdon.gov.uk

We will hold regular engagement events for service users and their families to meet the providers on the approved list and discuss the services they offer.

We will announce further events as they are arranged, however service users are free to contact the approved providers themselves, to find out more about them.

Last reviewed: 18/07/2018

Useful links:

While every care has been taken in the compilation of the information on this website, neither Hillingdon Council or PCG Care Solutions will be held responsible for any loss, damage or inconvenience caused as a result of using the site and any inaccuracies/errors within these pages.

If you choose to purchase services via the Marketplace, you are advised to refer to the Buyers Guide prior to making a purchase, as well as making your own enquiries and seeking independent advice. This is applicable to Adult services only, as there is no Marketplace for Children's services.