COUNCIL bosses have teamed up with independent experts to help provide vital information and advice to Hampshire residents who pay for their own expensive long-term care.

Three approved independent care fees specialist advisers will offer free initial consultations for people who receive help in a residential home, nursing home or in their own property but do not qualify for financial help because of their assets or savings.

Hampshire County Council has teamed up with The Wealth Care Partnership, Care Fees Investment Ltd, and Care Asset Management Ltd, to offer the no-obligation help, which will allow individuals to assess all the options available to them.

There are more than 150,000 people across the country who fund their own care, because they have assets or savings totalling more than £23,250.

But it is estimated that up to a quarter of them will run out of funds during their stay at a care home.

They will then have to look for alternative arrangements or seek financial support from other people, but in many cases support for planning long term care needs is available.

Hampshire County Council’s adult social care boss, Cllr Felicity Hindson, said: “More and more people are now taking advice before making one of the most important decisions of their lives.

“We would strongly recommend that individuals discuss their situations and finances with an independent care fees specialist who is an expert in care fees planning and who can help to explore all the options available for someone looking to fund their own care.

“Even if someone is currently in receipt of care it is still advisable for them to seek specialist information and advice as there may be options available to them as well.’

“Planning for long-term care is crucial to ensure that financial assets and any proceeds from the sale of a property are invested wisely and any remaining inheritance is protected.”

All three of the independent specialists have been approved by Hampshire Trading Standards’ Buy With Confidence scheme.

For more information, including a consultation without obligation or charge, ring Hampshire County Council on 0845 603 5630.