May 2020: Changes in relation to the Coronavirus Act 2020

Under the Act, the local authority is not obliged to carry out detailed assessments of people’s care and support needs as required previously under the Care Act. However, they will still be expected to respond as soon as possible (within a timeframe that would not risk breaching an adult’s human rights) to requests for care and support, consider the needs and wishes of people needing care and their family and carers and make an assessment of what care needs to be provided.

The local authority continues to have a duty to meet an adult’s needs, where a failure to do so would breach their human rights under the European Convention on Human Rights (“ECHR”). These include, for example, the right to life under Article 2 of the ECHR, the right to freedom from inhuman and degrading treatment under Article 3 and the right to private and family life under Article 8. For more information see Annex B: Guidance on streamlining assessments and reviews, Care Act easements: guidance for local authorities (Department of Health and Social Care).