Care Act Conversations with CASCAIDr

In Care Act Conversations, we provide advice and insight on adult social care law. We talk through what should happen and what goes wrong when people need care and support, and how you can uphold your rights.

You can access all our podcasts from this page or from Apple or Spotify

CASCAIDr set up this podcast so that more people can access free, expert information and advice.

Each episode we take an area of social care law that affects a lot of people, for example assessment for care, eligibility for services or direct payments for care and support.

  • We give an overview of what the law says.
  • We then explore some of the potential pitfalls and common errors, and how to avoid them, based on our experience of advising hundreds of people and reading hundreds of complaints and legal reports.
  • And we provide advice on how to respond if you think something unlawful is happening.

Care Act Conversations features:

  • Belinda Schwehr, CASCAIDr’s founder and Chief Executive. Belinda practised as a barrister, taught Public Law in University Law Schools, and then re-qualifyied as a solicitor. She developed a specialist practice in adults’ social care law, before moving into training and then setting up CASCAIDr to right legal wrongs.
  • Sara Wilcox, who oversees CASCAIDr’s triage service for free advice. Sara has extensive experience in providing advice and information to adults, carers and families.
  • Gerry Nosowska, one of CASCAIDr’s case workers, who is a registered social worker. Gerry has worked in local authority social care and runs a practice improvement consultancy. 

Care Act Conversations offers clear, understandable information for people who are grappling with the adult social care system. People giving advice and support to adults and carers can signpost them to this resource. We hope that decision makers in local authorities and the NHS will also see this as valuable source of information.

Episode 1 – Using the Care Act Backwards

In this episode, Belinda, Gerry and Sara, talk about the issue of getting the Care Act backwards, when councils start with what care is available and then work backwards to eligibility and needs. We highlight what the law says should happen in assessment and care planning, and how you can push for your entitlements.

Episode 2 – Hospital Discharge

In our second episode, we discuss the complexity and confusion around hospital discharge. We advise on what can go wrong, including decision making and funding. And we go over the important areas for you to clarify if you or a loved one is in hospital.

Episode 3 – Plugging away at the gap

In this episode, we talk about the gap between what the Care Act says must or should happen, and what can happen in practice. We focus in on the assessment gap and highlight some legal remedies if you find yourself waiting for a Care Act assessment.

Episode 4 – Plugging away at the gap (part two)

In this episode, we highlight the Carer’s Support gap. This is the gap between what the Care Act says must or should happen in terms of carers’ entitlements, and what can happen in practice. We highlight some legal remedies that carers can use to prevent or respond to legal issues.

Episode 5 – Plugging away at the gap (part three)

In this episode, we highlight the Care Planning gap. This is the gap between what the Care Act says must or should happen in terms of people having a plan, and care being provided to meet eligible needs, and what can happen in practice. We highlight the law and the action you can take to get your entitlements and respond to legal issues.

Episode 6 – Mental Capacity Mix-ups

In this episode, we explore how the Mental Capacity Act relates to Care Act duties. We talk about issues that come up in the context of Care Act processes and decisions that are to do with mental capacity. We highlight important areas for you to be aware of, and how you can ensure that your wishes and wants are taken into account in the future. We recommend that everyone uses and refers to the Mental Capacity Act Code of Practice Mental Capacity Act Code of Practice – GOV.UK (

Episode 7 – Top-Up Travesties

In this episode, we discuss the many and frequent ways that people get pushed into paying additional fees for care homes, above what the state will cover. We highlight the questions you need to ask before agreeing to any top-ups or to challenge top-ups that are in place, to ensure that are only used when there is a genuine choice and the payment is for a want rather than a need.

Episode 8 – Ordinary Residence Ordeals

In this episode, we delve into the mysteries of ordinary residence, deemed ordinary residence and, ultimately, which Council has responsibility for meeting duties under the Care Act 2014. We go through the law and principles, and provide sound advice on how to ensure that wrangles don’t get in the way of your entitlements.  

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