Can the LA use include my son’s savings as an income?
Our 16-year-old autistic son attends a residential school 38 weeks a year - coming home at holidays and weekends.
At a recent CIC meeting, we were told that if he had any savings at the age of 18, the Council would claim them. Is this correct and is there a minimum he is allowed to have?
If your child is attending a residential school for educational reasons, i.e. because it has been agreed that he requires educational programmes to be delivered beyond the normal school day, or because it is the nearest suitable school, then his savings and income will not be relevant. The part of your local authority that carries out its education functions will continue to have a duty to secure special educational provision in the plan, and to meet the costs of the fees of an independent school or college, including any boarding and lodging where relevant. This is explained at paragraph 9.131 of the SEN and Disability Code of Practice.
The position may be different if the part of the local authority that carries out its social care functions currently pays for the residential element of your child’s placement. The local authority is under an obligation to provide the services necessary to meet the eligible needs of a young person and/or their carer. However, once a child reaches the age of 18 local authorities are likely to undertake a financial assessment to determine which, if any, of those services will be provided free of charge. The rules governing charging for adult care services are under the Care Act. It is the young adult's income that will be assessed, not the income of the parents. You can find information about how this works, including how savings are taken into account on