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Socialist principle

(53 Posts)
Baggs Thu 27-Jul-17 08:02:42

In today's Times, James Kirkup argues from what I understood to be the socialist principle of "from each according to his ability; to each according to his need" that some form of Theresa May's so-called 'dementia tax' should be revived and pursued.

Primrose65 Thu 27-Jul-17 09:45:47

Sounds ominous Baggs, I'll find the article and take a look. I did read one opinion piece in the Guardian about 100% inheritance tax recently which I almost thought was a joke.

gillybob Thu 27-Jul-17 10:22:42

Well Baggs I am glad you started this thread. (I know I am asking for trouble here) I thought the principle of the "care" tax was good but it didn't seem to be explained properly. Without reaping up the whole argument and exact figures I can't see the problem with everyone paying towards their care in old age. Whether that care is in a residential home or in their own home is surely irelevant. Why do some feel the "need" or the right to expect everyone to pay towards their care when they themselves are sitting on huge amounts of money (albeit in the form of bricks and mortar). I think (again without going into exact figures) we should all be "allowed" to leave something behind for our children and grandchildren if we have it, but does this need to be hundreds of thousands? How can we expect someone with very little to speak of to pay for our care in old age just so we can leave our entire wealth to our families?

whitewave Thu 27-Jul-17 10:29:01

I absolutely agree with the principle of a care tax - it seems the most sensible approach, just as we have a NHS tax and welfare tax.

grannysue05 Thu 27-Jul-17 10:33:11

The whole argument centres on the principle that care in old age should be paid for 'currently' ...if that makes sense.
People who have 'bricks and mortar' have also paid a great deal of NIC during their working life.
NIC was originally created to fund the NHS and any health problems encountered in our lifetime would be covered by this 'government' insurance.
Now some people are being asked to (in effect) pay again for that insurance. That is not right.

gillybob Thu 27-Jul-17 10:41:22

People who have 'bricks and mortar' have also paid a great deal of NIC during their working life

Not necessarily grannysue.

I would like to see a well thought out situation where anyone with property worth more than (£???tbd) would be expected to pay towards their own care. Obviously if this care is in their own home then the money would be recouped after they have died (we all do eventually). Blimey I would be over the moon to be able to leave my children/grandchildren £100,000. If (for example) my house was worth £200,000 why should some of the difference not go towards my care? If I had that amount in the bank, it would so what's the difference?

whitewave Thu 27-Jul-17 11:35:05

What about those who do not have that sort of asset?

Why stop at the property? Why not include all valuable assets, like all property owned or land or anything else worth loads?

I must stop as we've had this argument before and we end up in circles

TriciaF Thu 27-Jul-17 11:43:56

GrannySue - not exactly. It all started in 1911 and there was no NHS then. Initially it was to cover unemployment due to illness. Since then there have been many changes.
Current situation (Wiki)
"National Insurance contributions are paid into the various National Insurance Funds after deduction of monies specifically allocated to the National Health Services (NHS). However a small percentage is transferred from the funds to the NHS from certain of the smaller sub-classes. Thus the four NHS organisations are partially funded from NI contributions but not from the NI Fund.[7] Less than half of benefit expenditure (42.1%) now goes on contributory benefits, compared with over 65% in 1978–79 because of the growth of means-tested benefits since the late 1970s.[8]"
I thought of this because I remember there was a category on my payslips which said NHS contributions.
I believe that now the greatest part of the payments is to the OAP.

GrandmaMoira Thu 27-Jul-17 11:54:26

I think Theresa May was right to consider this, though it must have lost her votes. With the increasing number of very elderly frail people, more and more money is needed for care and it has to come from somewhere. My house is worth quite a lot, though my income is low, and I want to leave it to my family, but it would be only fair for some to go towards care if I needed it.

gillybob Thu 27-Jul-17 12:57:20

Well ww if you don't have that asset you can't pay can you?

I agree we will never agree (does that even make sense?)

I just don't think its fair that someone with very little should be paying for me to be looked after, just so I can leave a (theoretical) pile to my children, when I should (if I can) pay for myself.

mostlyharmless Thu 27-Jul-17 13:06:07

Two main issues here.

Should people needing long term care (such as dementia patients) have to fund their own care while cancer or heart patients have their treatment on the NHS?

The other issue is the limit at which contributions are set (and capped?). Inheritance tax is being reduced under this government. Would it be fairer to increase inheritance tax (or use general taxation) so that the burden falls on those who can afford to pay rather those unfortunate enough to need social care?

There are no easy answers though. Any plans need cross party support as it's such a long term issue.

gillybob Thu 27-Jul-17 13:08:26

Its nothing to do with dementia, cancer or any other awful illness or condition. mostlyharmless It is the need for long term care at home.

devongirl Thu 27-Jul-17 13:09:12

I agree, gilly; having a large tax-free band for inheritance tax also gives offspring a considerable boost compared with children whose parents were not well of, thus perpetuating wealth disparity. (Apologies if I'm reinventing the wheel here!)

grannysue05 Thu 27-Jul-17 13:14:52

I think another issue is that previous governments were not able to foresee the ages that us golden oldies are now living to.
Most of my friends are late seventies and early eighties and we have all passed the age when our parents died.
Presumably future generations will live even longer than us. A hundred years will be commonplace.
Where will that cash come from unless that is planned for now?
Or will the retirement age creep up to eighty?
Heaven forbid! My (80 year old) friend just fainted!

gillybob Thu 27-Jul-17 13:19:36

As someone who will not retire until 67 (and a bit) I can well see future generations (in certain occupations) working until they drop !

Unless we tackle the massive care bills head on. Obviously no politician will be popular (TM proved this when she had to back track her proposals) especially with those who have properties worth hundreds of thousands (millions even) who want their children to inherit the lot and let the tax payer pick up the bill for their care.

It needs to be looked at Cross Party as no matter who is in power it will not go away. The young can only do so much you know.

grannysue05 Thu 27-Jul-17 13:33:01

Perhaps we should all read Cindersdad's thread on the National Debt!

Welshwife Thu 27-Jul-17 13:54:06

But at times the system for paying the care when people have no money does not work. We know people we sold their belongings etc and their house/ home to fund their care. They are in a very reasonably priced home (by comparison- still expensive!) but have now come to the point where they have now spent all the money from the house plus in a few weeks the money they are 'allowed' to keep will be gone. Applications have been sent and interviews done etc but so far they are not being awarded enough money. They are in the same home and he now is in the terminal stages of illness - but not quite bad enough to be classed as needing the top care level - and needs help with most things.
Their family are pulling their hair out - he has a reasonable pension which is paying some of the bill - but what to do next? As many places as possible have been contacted. They have nothing to sell and no money. -paid NIC etc.- never claimed anything before.

rosesarered Thu 27-Jul-17 13:54:49

I thought the T May proposals for care were better than is the case at the moment,
It allowed a £100,000 to be handed on to family, but posters on here, and in the country were up in arms about it.

gillybob Thu 27-Jul-17 14:01:09

I agree roses I would be over the moon to leave £100,000 to my children.

nigglynellie Thu 27-Jul-17 14:09:09

Under TM's proposals people needing residential care would in fact have been a lot better off and kept far more of their capital than under the present system. I think what people reared up at was the idea of care in the community being funded in the same way. I personally have no problem with this as care has to be paid for and can only become more expensive and to expect it to come out of poorer people's taxes when I have the means to fund it myself is, imo, just not right.

mostlyharmless Thu 27-Jul-17 14:12:59

TMs proposal extended the charge against your home, to care at home as well as for a residential care.

But the higher threshold might be better for people who need residential care rather than being cared for at home.

It's all so arbitrary though. We all want to stay in our own homes as long as possible. It's just bad luck that some families will lose out while others will never need to pay for care.

mostlyharmless Thu 27-Jul-17 14:14:11

Increasing inheritance tax (shock horror) would be a fairer way of funding care.

SueDonim Thu 27-Jul-17 14:25:17

I think it's hard to justify a young, low-earning couple, perhaps with small children, having to contribute to the care costs of someone in possession of property worth hundreds of thousands of pounds.

My MIL needed care at the end of her life. None of her children were willing or able to do the task so her care was paid for out of her estate.

My mother is still living unassisted in her own home, at almost 90yo, but should she need care, we, her children, can't/won't do it so I'd be only too happy to pay someone else to take on the task, and if that costs us an inheritance, so be it.

Jalima1108 Thu 27-Jul-17 14:42:42

mostlyharmless would that be fair on those who do not require care, to pay tax at 40%?
Either lowering the threshold or increasing the % would provide the government with income but higher taxation of the assets of people who have not either required care in old age or may have had enough to pay for it wholly themselves seems wrong - a 'care tax' as whitewave suggests would seem to be a fairer way.

sunseeker Thu 27-Jul-17 14:49:55

I am in the fortunate position of owning my own property. If the need ever arose I would have no problem in its being sold to pay for my care. My closest friend doesn't have any assets, doesn't it make sense that I should pay for my own care so that money is available so she can receive the care she may need?