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Duty of Care: What is it?

Duty of Care Act
Duty of Care Act

The Duty of care, as defined in tort law, is a legal obligation that is imposed on an individual requiring adherence to reasonable care while performing any acts that could potentially harm others.

The duty of care applies to anyone who is in a position to influence something that can cause some sort of harm to others or the stakeholders. For example, the duty of care applies to a lawyer who has the duty to study the defendant’s case properly and to the judge who has to pass a valid judgment without any favoritism.

Duty of Care Act

The Care Act 2014 defines the duty of care as the role to care for others and adults in particular by safeguarding their rights and providing them protection against potential abuse, neglect, and lack of care.

The main reason for introducing the Care Act was to improve the independence and well-being of the people and enable the Authorities to arrange services that could safeguard people from potential neglect and abuse. The local authorities have to ensure that the best available services are being provided to the locals. For this specific reason, they have to consider numerous factors. Some of the factors that the locals have to consider are:

  • What the available resources are and how they can be utilised.
  • Who the people are in the nearby areas that need care and support and are not being provided with the level of care they
  • Identifying care workers in the area who have support needs and providing them with the same.

The duty of care, as in the Care Act 2014, also lists the duties of the local authorities in ensuring that the care and Support needs of the patients and the carers are being met. The local authorities must also help people get benefit from the independent financial advice so that they can prepare for the future costs of care.

When Should the Local Authority Meet the Person’s Care Needs

The answer to this question is given in the Care Act 2014. The act clearly states that a person is entitled to have their care needs met when:

  • The needs are valid or ‘eligible’
  • The adult is the resident of the local area
  • Any of the 5 situations apply to them.

These are the 5 situations:

  • The type of care they need is provided free of cost
  • The person is unable to afford the cost of care and support
  • The person has requested the local authority to meet their needs
  • The individual does not have a sound mind or has no one to provide the care and support
  • The total cost of the care exceeds the cap on care costs.

It should also be noted that the local authorities cannot force their own plan on the people, however, they can help them in making a proper care and support plan they can follow.

At Online Care Courses we offer several training courses covering duty of care.  These include;

Duty of Care training Course

Preparing a care plan course

Elderly Care training course

Reference Links:


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Duty of Care: What is it?


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