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What is a Personal Budget/Self Directed Support?


What is Self Directed Support?

Self Directed Support is where a person is in control and chooses how their care and support needs will be met.  It is a way of making sure your social care support is personal to you.  It could be by receiving services commissioned by the Council from a contracted Care Agency Provider or it could be by receiving a Personal Budget Cash Direct Payment.  In some cases it could be a combination of both.

What is a Personal Budget?

A Personal Budget is made up of the amount of money it would cost to meet your agreed support needs.

A personal budget gives you:

  • Choice and control over the support that is right for you.
  • A say in all decisions about the help you need to live independently.
  • The opportunity to support yourself in ways that suit you.

The Personal Budget amount will also include the amount of Client Contribution that a person is required to pay towards the cost of the care package following the financial assessment of your personal financial circumstances.

The Personal Budget can either be paid direct to you so that you can arrange your own care and support or the Council can arrange the support for you, or it could be a combination of the two.

How do I get a Personal Budget?

You can only have a Personal Budget if you have been assessed by the Council Communities & Wellbeing Department as needing support to help you live independently. If you do not already have a Care Manager or Social Worker, then contact Communities & Wellbeing Department on 0161 253 5151.  They will see if you are eligible for a care needs assessment and, if you are, they will refer you to a Care Manager or Social Worker. If you do have a Care Manager or Social Worker, please contact them directly to request an assessment for a Personal Budget.

You will complete a care needs assessment with your Care Manager or Social Worker. This assessment is called a supported assessment as you will take an active part in completing it with your Care Manager or Social Worker. In Bury this is called My Adult Care Assessment (MACA).

The assessment will determine how much money is needed to provide your care support needs, this may also be called an Indicative Budget.

Will I need a Financial Assessment?

You will need to have a financial assessment of your personal financial circumstances to calculate how much you need to contribute towards your care support services. Financial Assessment Officers will ask you for details of your income, savings, bank accounts and certain bills you pay. They will tell you if you need to pay something towards your support and you will get a copy of the calculations. This financial assessment adheres to the rules issued by the Government Department of Health.

What is a Personal Budget Direct Payment?

Your Personal Budget is made up of money from the Council Communities and Wellbeing Department and your contribution, if you are assessed as needing to make one.



You may decide to receive a Direct Payment so that you can arrange your own care and support. Once the amount is agreed you can start planning how to spend it. Your Care Manager or Social Worker will help you to do this by using their experience to agree a plan which meets your support needs.

Who will arrange my Personal Budget?

Your Care Manager or Social Worker will talk to you during the care needs assessment and that is a good time to say that you would like to have a Personal Budget Direct Payment. If you would like more information they will be able to give it to you at this stage.

How do I manage my Personal Budget?

There are two ways that you can manage your Personal Budget Direct Payment:

  1. You can have a cash Direct Payment to arrange and purchase your own support which is done by using a Prepaid card. This will operate in the same way as a debit or credit card allowing you to pay for services from providers, purchase equipment and even pay your Personal Assistants. 
  2. You can ask someone else to look after your Personal Budget. There are organisations that will arrange the payment for support on your behalf. This is called a Managed Account. The charges for this will need to be included in the costing breakdown in your support plan. 

Payroll and Managed Accounts Providers

If you are intending to employ a Personal Assistant you will need a company to assist with the timesheets, wages calculations and HMRC returns.

Your Care Manager or Social Worker will be able to help you and provide some further information regarding these options.  However, the choice is yours.

Useful Information

The factsheets on this page have been made by the Government and provide an overview of the Care Act and the duties and powers of local authorities under the Act. You'll find some brief information on them in the dropdown sections below and the factsheets…

General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)

Bury Council is committed to ensuring that we are transparent about the ways in which we use personal information and that we have the right controls in place to ensure it is used responsibly and is kept from inappropriate access, theft or misuse.  For further information please see https://www.bury.gov.uk/index.aspx?articleid=14237

Bury Council do not promote or endorse any of the services listed in this Directory. For more information on this please read our disclaimer here.

This page was last updated on: 26/09/2018