Personal budgets

If you have been assessed as eligible for social care support, a personal budget is the amount of funding that is available for you to spend on your support.


You will know up-front and early what your budget is likely to be. This is so you can begin to plan the support you need (with help if you need it). You can choose how your care needs are met and by whom.

It can be managed in three different ways.

A direct payment

If you choose to manage the budget yourself and arrange your own support to meet your needs and agreed outcomes, this is called a direct payment. If you have a direct payment you must consider the following:

  • Do you want to employ your own personal assistant or use the services of agencies and care providers?

  • How much to pay staff if you employ your own personal assistant?

  • How you will keep records of payments and how they were spent?

We will provide information about what is available, but let you organise services and manage your budget on your own.

You can also nominate someone else (a 'third party') to receive the direct payment and to act on your behalf.

There is more detailed information and guidance available on our direct payments pages.

A virtually managed budget 

We can manage your personal budget and we will arrange the support required. This is known as a 'virtually managed budget'.

A combination of both direct payments and council management

This is particularly useful where people want to use our Adult Care services as well as other types of support. It is not possible to 'buy' our services with a direct payment.

If you take your personal budget as a direct payment or as a direct payment to a nominated person, you are required to maintain sufficient records to be able to show that any money provided to you as a personal budget has been used as agreed in your individual support plan.

If we manage all of your personal budget for you in a virtually managed budget, you do not need to maintain financial records.

How is your personal budget calculated?

In order to calculate your personal budget we have developed a Resource Allocation System which is a way of being able to calculate the budget someone might get. You will find a summary of this in the related documents section of this page. 

Related documents

The following documents are in Portable Document Format (PDF). You can download software to view PDF documents for free from the Adobe website (opens in a new window)

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