Financial redress is sometimes recommended by the LGO when a person has suffered harm – as compensation for maladministration, rather than damages. Generally speaking, poor social work does not sound in damages, but just recently, a remedy which is well known in the context of CHC status (NHS repayment of self funders’ fees for periods of care when the CCG should have been paying) has emerged as a remedy within the Care Act context too. It’s called Restitution.
Restitution is based on unjust enrichment on the part of the council in not having had to spend the money that the law required it to allocate. (see CP v NE Lincs, 2019, Court of Appeal, on this site).
These cases generally involve people who have been left without care, or paying privately for care that they should have been receiving from the Council and yet haven’t been getting that, because of some indefensible bit of illegality regarding process or substantive thinking, by the council, over a long period of time. Where an incapacitated person incurs a liability to someone else, THAT debt has to be seen as the measure of the reimbursement. It can also arise in cases where the Council was at fault for removing care, setting arbitrary limits to funding, and delays amongst other things.
Bradford City of Bradford Metropolitan District Council to pay £60,000 in restitution for failing to provide care or support for over 5 years, despite agreeing a support plan 17 016 346 Norfolk Norfolk County Council found at fault for failing to meet assessed eligible needs with a care plan that stepped up once a carer (both paid and unpaid) had refused to do any more – and now making restitution for that wrongdoing 19 002 258 Calderdale Calderdale Council at fault for poor communication, failing to involve a person in decisions surrounding their care, wrongly stopping direct payments and severe delays in carrying out an assessment 19 004 821 Calderdale Calderdale Metropolitan Borough Council at fault for arbitrary top up policies, for instructing service users to enter into top up agreement contracts with care homes directly, for failing to identify a suitable care home and for failing to undertake a needs assessment 19 019 079 Cheshire West & Chester Cheshire West and Cheshire Council at fault for stopping direct payments without explanation and applying an arbitrary DRE disregard 18 010 441 Hammersmith & Fulham London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham found at fault for delays in completing a sensory assessment and in implementing reablement support 18 019 465 Gloucestershire Gloucestershire County Council at fault for discontinuing support and for delaying reassessment 19 005 899 Sheffield Sheffield City Council and the CCG jointly at fault for delays in needs assessments and for failing to properly communicate and coordinate to reduce the impact of the lack of co-operation 17 019 772 Staffordshire Staffordshire County Council at fault for delay in reassessment and not meeting an assessed eligible need 19 011 306 Nottinghamshire Nottinghamshire at fault, for reducing a man’s care package because of financial pressures and leaving parents to pay 18 015 558 Thurrock Thurrock Council at fault for failing to include DRE in financial assessments 18 019 831 Lambeth Lambeth Council and the CCG at fault for delays in needs assessments and handling of a restitution claim 17 005 393 West Sussex West Sussex Council at fault for inadequate reassessments, poor record keeping, and incorrect back payments 18 014 895 Bath & North East Somerset Bath and North Somerset Council at fault for failing to address the shortfall in a personal budget 19 000 003 Merton London Borough of Merton Council delay in finding suitable placement was inexcusable 18 011 437 Dorset Dorset County Council at fault for unreasonable delays in funding Direct Payments 18 012 800 Kirklees Kirklees Council at fault for removing respite care and setting arbitrary limit to funding 19 008 980 Plymouth Plymouth Council at fault for miscommunication over safeguarding measures 18 017 093 South Tyneside South Tyneside Metropolitan Borough Council at fault for failing to follow assessment guidelines in regards to deafblind clients, failing to backdate direct payments, and failing to investigate restriction of contact imposed by its commissioned care provider 15 016 702 East Sussex County East Sussex County Council at fault for making a person pay a top-up for s.117 aftercare being provided at home 12 011 082 Wirral Wirral Council at fault for failing to complete a timely assessment of care needs, when a person arrived from another council’s area, resulting in a direct loss and breach of the Continuity provisions in ss37-38 of the Care Act 22 005 781 York York Council at fault for delays in reviewing a care package after Covid-19, poor record keeping about transport provision, and failing to offer a carer’s assessment 22 000 366 East Sussex East Sussex County Council found at fault for not following COVID Guidance and not acting flexibly during the pandemic causing a delay with setting up a direct payment to make up for non-provision 21 015 871 Leicester Leicester found at fault for refusing to transfer appointeeship to a relative 21 004 153 Cambridgeshire Cambridgeshire at fault for a 20-month, ongoing delay in providing a needs assessment, and for failing to implement agreed complaint remedies 21 017 827 Lancashire Lancashire County Council at fault for failing to secure the planned respite care and over communications about potential supported living settings 22 010 039 West Sussex West Sussex County Council at fault for failing to consider new evidence as part of an appeal for a disability related expenditure disregard 22 011 273