The Liberal Democrats have challenged Theresa May to answer ten pressing key questions on the Dementia Tax, calling on her to come clean before the election takes place.
These include what level the cap will be set at, whether it will be uprated with house prices and whether it will include interest rates and arrangement fees.
Theresa May has also been challenged over how long surviving relatives will be able to stay in a family home and whether measures will be put in place to stop people avoiding the Dementia Tax.
The Liberal Democrats have committed in their manifesto to implementing the recommendations of the Dilnot Commission, which would mean a cap on care costs of £72,000.
Stephen Williams, the Lib Dem parliamentary candidate for Bristol West, said:
“The dementia tax is a stealth inheritance tax in all but name and it will hit the elderly and most vulnerable in our society the most. It will force the sale of family homes to fund care for the sick and elderly. I am urging everyone to sign up to stop the dementia tax.
“Theresa May’s clarification come U-turn last week changes nothing. The Conservatives still want to take older people’s homes to fund social care and the Tory party manifesto makes no mention of any cap on costs. Their refusal to tell us what the cap on social care costs will be shows they are holding the public in contempt.
“The Lib Dems are calling for a penny on income tax to boost funding for the NHS and social care by £6 billion a year, as well as a £72,000 cap to protect people from crippling care costs – a much fairer way to deal with social care
“Families deserve to know exactly how much of their homes would be up for grabs now, not after the election. The Liberal Democrats will keep campaigning to scrap the Dementia Tax and ensure no-one has to worry about catastrophic costs to pay for their care."
The 10 questions Theresa May must answer on the Dementia Tax are below:
- At what level will the cap on care costs be set?
- How will it be uprated? Will it be in line with house prices?
- Does the £100,000 floor apply to households or individuals?
- Will the cap and £100,000 floor apply to care costs only, or will it also include accommodation costs?
Will people still need to pay an arrangement fee and interest for care costs, and if so how will these charges be set?
- Will interest fees and fee payments for care costs be included under the cap?
- Will local councils have to pay the additional costs for this scheme or will they be fully reimbursed by the Treasury?
- Will widows, widowers or dependent children be able to remain in the family home after their relative has died, especially where they are elderly themselves? Or will they be forced to sell the home to pay for care costs?
What interest rate will be charged on a deferred payment once the beneficiary has died?
- Will measures be put place to prevent people avoiding the Dementia Tax, for example releasing equity or gifting a house to children or grandchildren more than seven years before death?