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Levying the long-term care playing field

The Government is putting together proposals to reduce the burden of care in retirement with a £12,000 voluntary levy one of the solutions being floated.

The fee would be paid either upon retirement or deducted from a person’s estate after they die and it is thought that in return, people would be offered free care. But are such plans realistic?

This is one of a range of proposals designed to tackle the lack of funding in the long-term care sector likely to be set out in the Government’s upcoming green paper.
Currently, anyone with savings above £22,250 pays for their LTC while the care home bills for those under this threshold are met by the taxpayer.

Downing Street appears to back the optional scheme as preferable to retirees having to sell their homes to pay for care – an estimated 60,000 pensioners per year are forced to do this.

Other proposals believed to be in the green paper include a social insurance scheme where workers would pay a National Insurance top-up throughout their lives, and raising the £22,250 savings threshold to lift more people on modest incomes out of the means-tested band.

Symponia joint managing director Janet Davies believes that a partnership scheme will be proposed whereby the Government will work with insurance companies to encourage people aged 50 plus to take out a long-term care insurance policy. In return, the Government will match the cost of any payout for care fees.

Which proposal, if any, do you think would work? Leave your comments below.


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