Hidden carers and how the Law Commission’s proposals may help

Proposals to reform assessments could help social workers shine a light on the needs of hidden carers. Vern Pitt reports

Carers are not what they used to be. Or rather, not what the current legislative framework supposes them to be.

Currently, carers must be giving “regular and substantial care” to qualify for help from a local authority. They must also request an assessment of their needs if they are to receive one, although social workers have a duty to inform the carer of their right to request one. Consequently, many carers are hidden from the system. This means they may be missing out on support that could improve their lives and avoid costly interventions later.


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