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Specialist advisers needed on care costs

25 August 2020

The majority of over-45s approaching a local council for help with their or a loved one’s needs would welcome a referral to a financial adviser to help them meet their future care costs, opening up the market for specialist advisers, new research from Just Group has found. 

The Just Group Care Report 2020 showed that 55% of over-45s would welcome a referral and one in three (35%) would be happy to meet an adviser in person with a further 26% likely to make contact by phone or online.

Stephen Lowe, group communications director, Just Group, said: “The evidence shows people want help understanding their options on paying for care. Organising care is an onerous undertaking.”

Of those who had already co-ordinated care for an elderly relative, nearly eight in ten (78%) found the system too complex to navigate, while 77% found the whole process of finding care stressful.

However, advisers were not at the forefront of those surveyed when asked where they might seek support. Over half (51%) said they would contact Age UK/Age Concern, while 39% would approach their local council/social worker and just over one in 10 (12%) would consider an adviser.

Lowe added: “There is currently a large gap between the high number who would welcome a referral to a financial adviser from their council and a much smaller number who would think about contacting an adviser unprompted.

“Advice firms may see the opportunity but are perhaps wary of the complexity given the interaction of both regulated financial advice and non-regulated areas such as state benefits, treatment of the home in the means test and deliberate deprivation rules.”

With new government care funding proposals expected imminently, Lowe believes advisers who develop close ties with their local authorities and other care providers in their areas have an opportunity to become the “go-to experts” for those in need of advice and support.

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