Social care for adults in Scotland Advice & Support for:
Assessment and care plans for adults in Scotland
Your local council must do a needs assessment if they know or think you might need care and support. Even if they think you are unlikely to get support services, you are still entitled to an assessment.
Your local authority's website should tell you how to apply for a needs assessment, usually referred to a community care assessment. You could use our letter template to ask for an assessment.
If your needs aren't urgent, you may have to wait for a few weeks for your assessment.
A social worker or other care professional will usually visit you at home to do the assessment. You can have a family member, friend, carer or advocate with you during the assessment, if you want to. They'll talk to you about what matters most to you and what help you need to do those things. This is called being person-centred. They’ll also talk to you about any risks to your wellbeing if you don't get the right support now.
Not everyone who has a needs assessment will be entitled to get support.
If your needs don’t meet your local authority’s eligibility criteria, you won’t get care and support services from the local authority. The authority must write to you and let you know that you aren’t eligible, and why. It should also tell you about where else you might get help, and about its complaints procedure.
Planning your support
If you are eligible for support, your social work department should develop a care plan with you, after your needs have been assessed. The care plan will set out your care plan and how your needs will be met. The plan should include:
what your needs are and any related risks
what services you would prefer
a plan in case of emergency
details of services you will be getting, any charges or if you will be getting a direct payment
any care your carers are willing and able to provide
a date to review the plan.
You might have to wait some time before you start getting support services. If your needs change while you're waiting, get back in touch with the social work department. You have a right to complain if you have to wait a long time without getting any services.
Reviewing your support
Your local authority must review your support at least once a year to make sure that it still meets your needs. Your care plan should also be reviewed if you tell the authority there has has been an important change, eg your carer wants to go back to work.