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Residential Aged Care - Basic Daily Care Fee

Aged Care - Basic Daily Care Fee

The Basic Daily Fee is a contribution towards day-to-day living costs in an aged care facility, including meals, cleaning, laundry and utilities, such as heating and cooling. Everyone entering an aged care home is obliged to pay this fee and it is linked to a percentage of the basic Age pension.

As at March 20, 2024, the basic daily care fee for new residents, including respite residents, is $61.96 per day ($22,615.40 per annum) - the equivalent of 85% of the maximum single person rate of the basic Age Pension.

This rate applies even if the individual is a member of a couple for Age pension purposes, and regardless of whether they qualify for an Age pension, or otherwise. On entering an Aged care home individuals will receive a letter from the Department of Human Services confirming the basic daily fee payable.

The impact of this payment is, of course, that individuals in aged care may only have access to 15% of any aged pension to pay for incidentals, including clothing, unless they have access to other income or assets. Even individuals who do not qualify for a full or partial aged pension, and who make significant accommodation payments, can find themselves in a difficult position if in residential aged care for a significant time.

Care must be taken to ensure that when individuals enter aged care that not too much of their capital is paid into a refundable accommodation deposit (RAD), leaving them with limited funds to draw upon. Although there is a minimum amount of assets that a resident must be left with - $59,500 as at March 20, 2024 - we have seen this quickly erode if a resident has been in accommodation for a few years - and particularly if a mean tested care fee is payable. This is a regular issue unforeseen by many residents and their families.
Please note prior to making any Inquiry: Financial regulations regarding the provision of specific advice mean that it is impossible for us to provide assistance unless it is provided as part of professional advice for which fees will apply. If your circumstances are not complex and you don't require or want to pay for professional advice you should direct any queries in relation to Aged Care to Myagedcare.

If you would like to arrange professional advice in relation to the above matters, please complete the Inquiry form below providing details and you will be contacted accordingly. You will receive a fee quotation in advance of any advice or services being provided.