‘Council told me to pay an extra £700 for my wife’s care – three months after she died’

Carer looking after elderly woman

Caring costs are putting pressure on older households

Patrick O'Donnell

By Patrick O'Donnell

Published: 20/02/2024

- 14:32

Updated: 20/02/2024

- 15:25

Britons are being forced to deal with the rising costs of care for loved ones

A pensioner was left felling “really down” after his local council told him to pay an extra £700 in care costs for his wife – three months after she died.

Michael Bradshaw, 90, from Swindon received an invoice requesting him to pay the sum which covered the cost of care across three months for his late wife Edna.

According to the 90-year-old, he had already paid for two of the three months and was not informed about a potential hike to the cost.

Swindon Council has since admitted that the local authority had not made it clear to Mr Bradshaw about care costs going up in price.

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Older man looking worried and carer looking after older woman

Care costs are pushing pensioners to the brink


Speaking to the Swindon Advertiser, the pensioner said the debacle has affected him “a lot” and left him feeling “really down”.

Mr Bradshaw explained: “It was hard enough making that money every week and then to have it increase when the person had passed away. It is really bad no-one at the council seems to answer the questions.”

He agreed to pay the usual £2,316.16 for the care provided in June last year but did not give any extra money due to not being told about the rising price.

The council were asking him to pay an extra £715.68 for the care his wife received over April, May and June of that year.

His wife Edna passed away at the age of 87 on June 29 after suffering from Parkinson’s and mobility issues, with an invoice being sent to Mr Bradshaw the following month.

Originally, Mr Bradshaw believed he would get an invoice for the usual amount he pays every 28th of the month. This is what has been paid since December 2022.

The money was spent on carers who would visit his wife four times a day to help with basic everyday needs.

According to Mr Bradshaw, he spent the following six months trying to address the situation with the council by calling its credit control, finance and invoicing departments multiple times.

Swindon Borough Council

Swindon Borough Council is under fire

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However, he was either told to reach out to another department or wait for another phone call, which he claims did not come about.

After the press contacted the local authority directly about Mr Bradshaw’s situation, the council reached out to him last week to tell him the due credit of £715.68 would be sent to the right department and he would not have to pay.

Mr Bradshaw’s daughter Susan Holland, 68, described the council’s behaviour as “disgusting”. In response to Mr Bradshaw’s case, a representative from Swindon Council said: “We will contact Mr Bradshaw to resolve this issue as quickly as possible.

"We always endeavour to ensure that any price increases are made clear and recognise in this case we have not done so.”

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