Connecting North West business to relevant training, insight, conversation and each other

Rising cost of care prompts ‘plan for the future’ warning

People should do more to plan for the future, an expert has warned after new figures revealed how much the cost of care in England is increasing.

Recent figures from Citizens’ Advice found that care home fees increased by an average of £900 in the last financial year, with almost ten per cent of residents given only a week’s notice of a rise in fees.

Kathryn Harwood, head of Wills & Estate Planning at Napthens solicitors, warns that the figures highlight the importance of planning for the future at an early stage, with thought given to both finances and to the type of care which might be required.

She explained: “With the ever-increasing cost of care, and an ageing population, there is an even greater need for financial and general estate planning.

“Planning for the future is something we encourage every adult to look at as soon as they are able, to plan for any eventuality.

“There are many ways to do this, for instance Lasting Powers of Attorney (LPA), documents which give legal authority to a chosen person or persons, so they can make important decisions on an individual’s behalf if they can’t do so themselves.

“There are two types of LPA, relating to property and financial affairs, and to health and welfare. We are seeing a real increase in the use of health and welfare LPAs, as these documents can make a real difference if someone falls very ill or loses mental capacity to make decisions.

“Changes in the way care is provided mean that it may be wise to specify exactly what type of care an individual wishes to receive, for instance advances in dementia care mean people can be given comfort using the latest research relating to activities and music.

“It’s also important to ensure that the right people are appointed to make decisions, so anyone with any questions should contact a legal advisor about this issue.”

Wills and Probate - head of Wills and Probate - Kathryn Harwood