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Direct Payments

If you have had an assessment by Children or Adult’s Services, a Social Worker will have discussed Direct Payments with you as an option to meet your care and support needs. 

Direct Payments enable people to arrange care and services themselves ​instead of receiving a package of care arranged by the Local Authority. Direct Payments are suitable for a wide range of people, including:

  • Parents and carers aged 16 or over 
  • People with parental responsibility for a child with disabilities 
  • Older people 
  • Adults with physical or sensory impairments 
  • Adults with learning disabilities or mental health issues 

Recipients of Direct Payments or their representatives often find that they have: 

  • more choice and control over the services they receive, and 
  • care provided in a more convenient and flexible way. 

​With Direct Payments you choose what type of help you need, who provides it and when services are required. 

If you, your family, or your carer have care or support needs that you are not able to meet without help, it is important that you contact us to discuss your situation. 

You will need to undergo a Well-being Assessment by a social worker from Children’s or Adult’s Services, which will identify what your needs are and the best way to ensure that they are met. 

Direct Payments are recommended as one of the fastest growing methods of meeting the outcomes of people in Wales, and it is our aim to ensure that as many people as possible are able to benefit from them. 
There are a number of benefits if you choose to use a Direct Payment:

  • You are more involved in the decisions that affect your life. 
  • Day-to-day control of the money and provision of your care is given to you. 
  • More flexibility and choice, enabling you to purchase care that is better suited to your individual needs. 
  • You make arrangements directly so that anyone involved with your care reports to you. 
  • You organise the timetable for your care.
  • Employing a personal assistant to meet your Care and Support needs 
  • Buying services from a private provider of your choice (e.g. care agency) 
  • Paying towards transport costs so you can visit friends or family, or so that you can enjoy leisure or educational activities to meet your assessed outcomes 
  • Buying support to give your unpaid or family carer relief from their role 
  • Purchasing residential or respite care 

​Direct Payments cannot be used for: 

  • Buying health services e.g. nursing care 
  • Purchasing personal or luxury items 
  • Paying household bills 
  • Paying accommodation costs
If you are eligible for Care and Support from us, your assessing social worker will have discussed a Direct Payment with you. This discussion will have included the necessary levels of support. 

As a Cardiff Direct Payment recipient you will be given a Core Support package, which we will arrange with the support provider. This will provide you with frontline advice and support from Direct Payment Advisors on how to manage a Direct Payment, as well as contingency arrangements and future planning.

If you wish to recruit a personal assistant, you will then be referred to the support provider for Employer Setup and Initial Recruitment. This will enable you to start the necessary processes to become an employer, including training on employment law and the necessary steps to advertise and recruit for staff.
Managing finances, especially when provided in the form of public funds, can be a daunting task, but the support provider will be able to help you.

  • Payroll Service - For help managing the basic activities behind employing personal assistants, agencies and other providers, we can arrange a Payroll service on your behalf. This service will provide assistance in the form of financial advice, templates and forms to manage payroll

  • Managed Banking - If you would prefer not to manage the finances behind your Direct Payment, the support provider can also act as an agent on your behalf. This is provided through a Managed Banking service which can be arranged in the same way. 

Social workers are able to evaluate the right choices for you through the well-being assessment process and will make the referral once a decision has been reached. For further details on how these services are provided, please see the brochure of services.
The Council is working with an assigned support provider, Dewis Centre for Independent Living​​​​​​​​External link opens in a new window , to ensure that Direct Payment recipients are supported through the process of managing their Direct Payment.

They have extensive experience in working with Direct Payments and independent living, as well as a strong history of supporting those with disabilities.

The service provided by Dewis is free of charge for recipients of Direct Payments and consists of five key elements (not all of which may be required.)

  • Core Support – help and advice on managing Direct Payments 
  • Payroll – administrative assistance with managing payroll for employees 
  • Managed Banking – a comprehensive support function to manage Direct Payment funds on behalf of the recipient 
  • Employer setup – assisting recipients with becoming employers of their own Personal Assistants 
  • Recruitment – help and advice with recruiting to cover Care and Support needs


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