Personal Budgets & Direct Payments

If your child has a continuing care package via health, you're entitled to have a personal health budget to manage yourself. Your health assessor will talk you through this.

If your child has agreed eligible needs that will be met by your Local Authority (LA), you may be offered the option of a personal or individual budget. 

In England, where efforts are being made to integrate funding for care, your personal budget may combine any funding from health, social care and education.

Once the amount of the personal budget has been agreed, you and your caseworker can plan how best to support your child’s needs using your personal budget. You may choose for the LA to organise your child’s care or you may choose to organise this yourself. In this case your child’s budget is given to you as a Direct Payment (DP). This means you're given the funds to employ carers or personal assistants (PAs) for your child yourself. There are supporting organisations that can help with managing the employment and support of carers / PAs. Your LA will be able to tell you which one(s) you could use locally. 

You'll need to keep a careful record of what you spend, including all receipts. All LAs audit DP accounts and will want to see these and detail of how you manage your direct payments. This includes, for example, whether the person you employ is eligible to work in this country and what employment contract you have with them.

Page last reviewed / updated: February 2021
Next review due: February 2022