I propose to take Questions Nos. 416 and 418 together.
The Nursing Homes Support Scheme (NHSS), commonly referred to as A Fair Deal, is a system of financial support for those in need of long-term nursing home care. Participants contribute to the cost of their care according to their income and assets while the State pays the balance of the cost.
The Scheme aims to ensure that long-term nursing home care is accessible and affordable for everyone and that people are cared for in the most appropriate settings. An applicant to the scheme can choose any public, voluntary or approved private nursing home. The home must have availability and be able to cater for the applicant's particular needs.
Participants in the Scheme contribute up to 80% of their assessable income and a maximum of 7.5% per annum of the value of assets held. Assets include cash assets and all forms of property whether situated in the State or not. The capital value of an individual’s principal private residence (PPR) is only included in the financial assessment for the first three years of their time in care. This is known as the three year cap.
In line with the Nursing Homes Support Scheme Act 2009 a transferred asset, is assessed as per its value on the date application for State support was first made. This is provided in Schedule 1 of the Act. In the context of a transferred asset, it relates to an asset which has been transferred at any time in the period of 5 years prior to, or at any time on or subsequent to, the date on which an application for State support is first made by or on behalf of that person. It relates to circumstances in which the transfer was made for no consideration, for nominal consideration, or for consideration which is less than 75 per cent of the estimated market value of the interest of the person in the asset at the time of the transfer, with some exceptions relating to the transfer of assets in the context of the maintenance of a child or other matrimonial proceedings.