The Fair Deal Scheme

The Fair Deal Scheme is a scheme of financial support for people who require long-term nursing home care in Ireland. It is designed to give financial assistance to those who require full-time nursing care, regardless of their financial circumstances. The Scheme is administered by the HSE on behalf of the Department of Health.

Under the Fair Deal Scheme, the applicant will make a financial contribution towards the cost of their care and if your application is successful, the State will pay the balance to your selected HSE approved Nursing Home.  The amount of your financial contribution towards your weekly nursing home costs will depend on your incomes and assets if applicable.

How to Make an Application for the Fair Deal Scheme

Step 1 is an application for a Care Needs Assessment. This identifies whether or not the patient requires long term nursing home care. The Care Needs Assessment is carried out by HSE professionals who will need to meet and assess the applicant.

Step 2 is an application for financial support from the State and where the Financial Assessment form is completed. The financial assessment is used to determine the contributions to the cost of care and to determine the level of State assistance, if any, that will be paid on the applicant’s behalf’s to the nursing home.

Step 3 is an optional step if you wish to apply for the Nursing Home Loan (i.e. the ‘Ancillary State Support’) whereby you apply for additional assistance to enable you to pay your contribution in full at a future date. This is a form of loan advanced to you and charged on your property assets in the State.

The loan is built up as the State pays your nursing home contributions and is repayable when:

  • You pass away – it will be repaid from your estate
  • You sell or transfer the property (HSE must be notified within 10 working days of transfer/sale)
  • You or your partner are made bankrupt
  • The HSE determines that it has been given false/misleading information relating to the loan application.

Interest is applied for availing of the loan and the interest is linked to the annual increase/decrease in the consumer price inflation (CPI) which is applied to the loan and is collected when the loan is repaid.

How Eolas Money Can Help:

At Eolas Money, we understand how sensitive and difficult a time it is for families when considering long-term residential care for themselves or a loved one. Naturally, the financial impact of any such decision, including the benefits or otherwise of participation in the Fair Deal Scheme, gives rise to many questions. If you would like our help in answering any of these questions, please contact us.

Please note our hourly rate of €200 plus VAT applies for the provision of this advice.

Brendan talking about the Fair Deal Scheme on Newstalk Radio