Ukraine refugee payments should not count for care charges, says government

Councils should disregard £350-a-month payment when assessing refugee hosts' income for charging purposes, DHSC guidance says

Two Ukrainian child refugees in Poland
Credit: Pakkin Leung / Wikimedia Commons

People who take Ukrainian refugees into their homes should not have the money they receive for doing so counted for the purposes of care charges, the government has said.

In guidance issued yesterday, the Department of Health and Social Care said councils should disregard the £350 a month paid to sponsors under the Homes for Ukraine programme when assessing their resources for charging purposes.

Authorities should consider the sum as a payment for expenses incurred as a volunteer, which, under paragraph 6 of schedule 1 of the Care and Support (Charging and Assessment Resources) Regulations 2014, should be disregarded when calculating a person’s income.

The DHSC said it would be unreasonable for authorities to expect people to account for the expenditure involved in hosting a refugee.

“Where a sponsor undertakes the charitable act of opening up their own home to a refugee person or family, it is reasonable to assume the home or property will be subjected to additional wear and tear or unintentional damage than would otherwise be the case,” said the guidance.

“There is also an expectation on the host to provide sufficient furnishings and display acts of kindness which may come at a cost, while the refugee settles into their temporary home and environment. It would be unreasonable to ask the sponsor to break down and itemise all expenditure incurred while hosting a refugee.”

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