How do we decide on your assessed needs?

Your assessor will decide whether you are eligible for support by working through with you the eligibility criteria set out below. We will discuss with you, your family and carers, what options are available to you.


During your assessment, we will consider with you how your needs effect your wellbeing and consider what you’d like to achieve in your day-to-day life. We use the national eligibility criteria (which is a set of national rules) to help us decide if you are eligible to get support from us.

The three questions we will consider with you are:

  1. Are your needs related to a physical or mental impairment or illness?
  2. Because of your needs, are you unable to do two or more of the things listed here?  [Can the list be included as a dropdown or something similar?
    • Getting washed: Do you need help with personal hygiene? For example, washing yourself, washing your hair, cleaning your teeth or washing your clothes.
    • Medication: Do you need help with taking your medications? Do you need help remembering when to take them or which ones to take? Can you collect your medications?
    • Going to the toilet: Do you need help to use the toilet, or with continence?
    • Getting dressed: Are you able to get dressed? This includes dressing appropriately for the weather and selecting clean clothes.
    • Being safe at home: Are you safe inside and outside your home? For example, being able to move around your home, including getting on and off a chair or in and out of bed, getting in and out of your home and using appliances such as a kettle and oven safely.
    • Eating and drinking: Do you need help to prepare meals and to eat and drink?
    • Getting out and about: Are you able to make use of necessary facilities or services in the local community including public transport and recreational opportunities? Are you struggling to attend activities that you used to enjoy and are important to you?
    • Role as a parent: Do you look after a child?
    • Maintaining your home: Are you able to do housework, shopping, gardening, routine maintenance and pay bills?
    • Work (paid/voluntary) and learning: Are you able to work? Are there any learning opportunities at a local college or community centre?
    • Relationships:  Are you able to see or speak to family and friends and discuss if you feel lonely or isolated because of your needs? This can also include any caring responsibilities that you have.
  3. If so, is there or is there likely to be a significant effect on your wellbeing as a result?

We might think the effect on your wellbeing is significant if it will have an important or a major effect on your daily life and independence. If the answer to all three questions is yes, you will have eligible needs for care and support.

How it is assessed

You are assessed as being unable to do the things we’ve listed above if you:

  • Need help to do them
  • Can do them without help but it causes you significant pain, distress or anxiety
  • Can do them without help but it could or does put yours or another person’s health and safety at risk
  • Can do them without help but it takes you a lot longer than others

When we consider the effect on your wellbeing, we will consider these areas:

  • Your personal dignity (including treating you with respect)
  • Your physical, mental health and emotional wellbeing
  • Protecting you from abuse and neglect
  • Your control over day-to-day life (including over support provided to you and the way it’s provided).
  • Your participation in work, education, training or leisure
  • Your social and economic wellbeing
  • Your domestic, family and personal life
  • The suitability of your living accommodation
  • Your contribution to society

We understand that needs can change or vary from time to time because of your health or situation. We will consider this when making decisions about whether you are eligible for support.

If you have eligible needs, we will:

  • work with you to plan your care and support. Your support plan will set out how you will be supported to achieve your outcomes (goals).   You can read more about care and support planning here.
  • determine your personal budget.  This is the amount of money we think is needed to meet the eligible needs identified in your assessment.  Your personal budget will be made up of money from us plus any financial contribution you are assessed to pay including how your care is going to be paid for.   We will talk to you about ways of receiving and using your personal budget.  For example, we could pay your personal budget to you as a direct payment so you can manage your care and support yourself.
  • arrange a financial assessment to decide if you must make a financial contribution to your care.  You can read more about a financial assessment in our Paying for Care section.

We will only help you with unmet needs. This means we generally won’t provide care for needs that are already being met from somewhere else, or by someone else, for example a family member or friend. If you are not eligible for help from us, we can give you information and advice about what help is available elsewhere. This could be from local charities or voluntary organisations.

The next stage

Stage 3: How do we complete your care and support plan?

Related information

What is an Adult Social Care Assessment?

How is my assessment carried out?

Page last updated: 06 Oct 2023