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Independent Social Work Services

A Strength-Based Approach to Social Work

As a professional, Independent Social Worker, I can be instructed to complete assessments and reports for a variety of reasons.  I use a strength-based, person-centred approach to my practice which means I approach any assessments and reports in a positive manner rather than focusing entirely on what someone can’t do.  Strength-based approaches to Social Work are about the individual, their life and circumstances.  I use a multi-disciplinary approach and use the person and their networks of support to direct my work.

Often, I use the Care Act 2014 as a framework for assessment.  The Care Act provides a framework under which local authorities assess care needs.  They use this framework to assess a person’s care and support needs and following this, identify which services a person is eligible to receive.  The assessment must be person-centred throughout, involving the person and supporting them to have choice and control.  My care needs assessments are person-centred and involve the person and their support networks to complete a thorough assessment.  All of my assessments are completed by me, a Registered Social Worker with over 10 years’ experience working within local authority adult social care teams.  The purpose of a Care Act assessment is to identify the needs of a person and how these impact on their wellbeing, and the outcomes that the person wishes to achieve in their day-to-day life.

Being independent of any local authorities, I can be instructed to complete Care Act or care needs assessments and do so for a variety of reasons. Including; second opinion assessments if there is disagreement with one completed by a local authority, or refusal by a local authority to complete an assessment because the person doesn’t appear to have a need for care and support.  I can be instructed by individuals, their representatives or solicitors.  I can also be instructed by local authorities who would like a care need assessment completed by an independent, registered Social Worker.

Do You Pay for Your Own Care?

You may be in the position where you pay for your own care and haven’t involved social services in the planning of you care.  If this is the case and you would like support from a Social Worker, I can be instructed to assist with all aspects of care planning from; assessing your needs, identifying what level of assistance you require, helping you find the right care or care home and monitoring the care you receive.  This can be particularly useful if you live a long way from your family.  I can be instructed for a single piece of work or longer-term if required.  If it’s longer-term monitoring of your care you require, I charge a manageable monthly fee rather than an hourly rate.  This includes a visit to you and a review of your care records. I also help you create a personal profile which is given to your provider (if they don’t already have one) which identifies what you have enjoyed doing in the past which can be fed into your care plan.

Regardless of who pays for your care, your are entitled to a free assessment from the local authority.  However, if you are then assessed as being able to pay for your own care, the local authority can now charge you if you ask then to arrange or help you find the right care. This varies from one local authority to the next and can, in my experience range from free to £400. Generally speaking,  a person pays for their own care if they have savings and investments over £23,250. This includes their home unless a spouse (for instance) is still living in it.  However, waiting lists are often long and we can provide a much quicker service if you are experiencing delays waiting for a local authority assessment.  Typically, we can complete an assessment and have it back to you within 2 weeks of being instructed.

Social Work Services for Solicitors

As an Independent Social Worker, I can be instructed by solicitors to complete assessments and reports and do so for many different reasons.  I can also take on a small amount of legal aid work.  I have been instructed to complete assessments and court reports for both adults and children.  Sometimes, I am instructed to complete a second opinion care assessment where a client is challenging an assessment completed by a local authority who (for anyone age 18 or over) should use the Care Act as a framework for assessment.  Other times, I am instructed by solicitors to complete a bespoke, independent report about a client’s circumstances and offer my professional opinion about a certain course of action.  Increasingly, I am instructed by specialist human rights lawyers in immigration cases where a client is seeking judicial review of a notice of deportation.

I am an experienced mental capacity assessor and I’m often instructed to complete an assessment of a client’s mental capacity to litigate alongside other assessments or reports.  So if you require an Independent Social Work assessment and report, let’s chat and I will let you know if I can assist you.  If it’s a mental capacity assessment you require, visit our mental capacity assessment pages.