The deadline is approaching for families who have wrongly paid care home fees for sick relatives; but as a result, a rising number of ‘rogue’ solicitors and claims management companies are making rash claims.
An increasing amount of non-specialist law firms and organisations are warning thousands of families that they could be missing out on reclaiming unfairly paid fees and they are claiming miraculous results in the run-up to the cut-off dates.
The Department of Health announced in March that people disputing fees paid between 1st April 2004 and 31st March 2011 have until 30th September to submit a claim. Those who wish to make a claim for care home fees paid between 1st April 2011 and 31st March 2012 have until 31st March 2013 to register an appeal.
When the deadline was first announced Primary Care Trusts (PCTs) were asked to contact patients who may be eligible but many are still unaware that they could be paying unnecessary fees and are entitled to claim them back.
Recently Cheselden, the UK’s leading NHS Continuing Healthcare review firm, issued a caution about the rising tide of continuing care claim ‘cowboys’. The Cheshire-based specialists reported that many lawyers and claims companies in the care review market do not have the right expertise or training necessary.
According to the specialists, a growing number of ‘bogus’ claims are jamming up the system and these are delaying the process procedure for genuine claims.
Colin Ball, Cheselden’s Managing Director, said: “To operate in the care fees assessment and reclaims market, you need wide experience and detailed knowledge of the current and previous NHS Continuing Healthcare assessments and how they work. Without this, how can you possibly offer an effective service for reviewing or reclaiming care costs?”
Care fees can cost up to £50,000 a year and many families are discovering that they need to dip into their savings or sell a property to fund the costs.
This article was written by Cheselden; the UK’s leading NHS Continuing Healthcare review firm. They’ve successfully reviewed thousands of cases and handled hundreds of successful claims for current and retrospective funding since 2007.