Below, we answer some of the most commonly asked questions about self-directed support.


I think DPs are being stopped in our area. Can this happen?

Who can access SDS?

I thought SDS was only for disabled adults. Is this true?

How can it benefit me?

Can Guardians or Attorneys request and receive SDS?

How do I get SDS?

How am I assessed for SDS – what is the process?

I am happy with the support I have – do I have to take SDS?

Can I get help to decide?

Is SDS not just about cuts?

What can I do if I think my budget is not enough?

Where’s the money going to come from to pay for Self-Directed Support?

But what if the money’s not there?

Is this really just a way to do things on the cheap?

What responsibilities will I have?

Can someone, other than the assessed person, receive and / or manage the payment?

Can I change how I spend my individual budget?

Where can I go to buy the services I need?

Can I buy services from my council?

Can I buy short breaks (respite)?

Can I use self-directed support for 'Free Personal Care'?

Will service users have to pay for the services they receive through SDS?

If I move from one council area to another will I still get the same level of support and will I be charged the same contribution?

How accountable will individuals be for the use of the money?

What if someone can’t open a bank account for their funding?

Will it affect benefits?

If someone works, how does this affect their funding for Self-Directed Support?

If it all goes wrong, what happens?

When can my council refuse to offer me SDS?

Who do I complain to if I am not happy with the service?

My Council have advised me that I am not eligible to receive any help with my Social Care, what do I do now?

Now that I’m getting SDS, my Council are charging me for services I never had to pay for before. Why is this?

I have asked my Council if I can use my Direct Payment to make a purchase and they have refused. Can they do this?


I would like to receive a Direct Payment to employ a family member as my personal assistant. Is this allowed under SDS?

I was getting support before and have now been re-assessed and am receiving Self-directed Support but the Council have made cuts to my budget which I now feel doesn’t meet my needs. What can I do?