Legal Literacy for Commissioning Adult Social Care


This one day session on legal literacy will cover all the major legislations such as Mental Capacity Act, Mental Health Act, Care Act including dual sensory loss and Human Rights Act that sit behind social work

Who is the Course aimed at?

Commissioning staff with responsibility for commissioning adult social care

How Long is the Course?

1 Day

Learning Outcomes
  • Be aware of the main legislation relevant to adult social care and where to find key information
  • Understand the role of primary legislation, regulations, statutory guidance and best practice guidance in adult social care practice
  • Develop a clear understanding of the differences between duties and powers and between law, guidance and policy.
  • Understand the source and limits of the main legal duties and powers relevant to adult social care
  • Be able to identify the main legal duties under the Care Act and understand their implications for commissioning
  • Develop knowledge of key issues for commissioning under the Care Act including making a lawful offer, agreeing top-ups and deferred payment agreements, joint commissioning (including s.117) and provider failure
  • Be aware of the main legal issues which can arise in relation to mental capacity and contracting, the role of deputies and attorneys and the importance of human rights considerations
  • Know the key principles to follow to make defensible decisions in adult social care


Housekeeping and Introductions

Session 1a: How the legal framework works

Small group discussion of extracts from relevant statutory guidance

Session 1b: Overview of the main legislation relevant to Adult Social Care: Mental Capacity Act, Mental Health Act, Care Act and Human Rights Act.

11.00-11.15 Comfort break


Session 2: Brief overview of main Care Act duties, including:

  • Care Act assessment (including special groups e.g. dual sensory impairment) and eligibility
  • Personal Budgets and Care Planning – main duties
  • The Safeguarding Enquiry Duty
  • The Advocacy Duties (including implications for commissioning advocacy)

Key issues for commissioning:

  • How to determine a lawful offer – wants vs needs, setting the personal budget
  • Top-ups and Deferred Payments Agreements
  • Co-operation, integration and responsibility
  • Provider concerns and failure

Q&A and discussion

12.30-13.15 Lunch break


Session 3: Outline of other important powers, principles and duties, including

  • Mental Capacity Act basics (and myths)
  • Who’s contracting – the importance of Mental Capacity, Deputies, Attorneys and the significance of s.18(4) Care Act
  • Mental Health Act – s.117 – how does entitlement arise and end and what does it mean for commissioning
  • Absolute and contingent human rights – particularly right to due process (Article 6) & right to respect for home, family life and privacy (Article 8) and their implications for commissioning


14.45-15.00 Comfort break


Session 4: Disputes, delays and making defensible decisions

  • Ordinary residence, CHC, s.117 and disputes
  • How to make a defensible decision

Small group application to commissioning scenarios

16.30 Finish

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Hello! We are able to offer the vast majority of our courses online in a virtual classroom via your preferred video conferencing platform. All of our course contents have been updated to reflect the current COVID-19 situation. To enquire about any of our courses to be delivered online please go to our ‘Contact Us’ page.