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Bluebird Care (Peterborough & Rutland) (19 018 415)

Category : Adult care services > Charging

Decision : Closed after initial enquiries

Decision date : 24 Mar 2020

The Ombudsman's final decision:

Summary: The Ombudsman will not investigate Mr X’s complaint that his father was charged for care he did not receive. This is because it is unlikely an investigation would find fault with the care provider.

The complaint

  1. Mr X complains on behalf of his father, Mr Y, that Mr Y was charged for care visits for 28 days after cancelling the service. Mr X says this caused direct financial loss to his father.

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The Ombudsman’s role and powers

  1. We investigate complaints about adult social care providers. We provide a free service, but must use public money carefully. We may decide not to start or continue with an investigation if we believe:
  • the injustice is not significant enough to justify our involvement, or
  • it is unlikely further investigation will lead to a different outcome

(Local Government Act 1974, sections 34B(8) and (9))

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How I considered this complaint

  1. I considered the complaint and the information provided by the care company. I have written to Mr X with my draft decision and given him an opportunity to comment.

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What I found

  1. Mr Y has care and support needs. He signed a contract with the care provider to meet these needs.
  2. Mr Y later terminated his contract with the care provider. The care provider says it issued invoices for 28 days of scheduled visits in line with its policy.
  3. Mr X says that Mr Y did not need the scheduled visits because he had made other arrangements for his care and that his father should not have been charged the full amount for these visits.
  4. The terms and conditions of the contract state that 28 days’ notice is required to terminate the contract. Therefore, it is unlikely that an investigation by the Ombudsman would find fault with the care provider in charging for this period.

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Final decision

  1. The Ombudsman will not investigate this complaint because it is unlikely that an investigation would find fault with the care provider.

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Investigator's decision on behalf of the Ombudsman

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