A court ruled that a council underpaid private care homes for placements, leaving it with a seven figure bill.
Almost 30 care homes claimed that Torbay Council was paying them up to £70 less per person per week in comparison to neighbouring Devon Country Council. According to a report by the BBC
The Torbay Quality Care Forum (TQCF) said that by not providing adequate payment could create difficulties with staffing and maintenance.
Accountants who were appointed to report on the council’s workings agreed with TQCF that the authority had made “illogical mathematical errors”. The TQCF won a judicial review at the High Court in London. The judge also agreed that the calculation that the authority used was “fundamentally flawed”.
TQCF estimates that the total cost to the council in increased funding for care homes in the coming year will be in the region of £3.5m.
Alan Beale a director TQCF, siad, “The bottom line is that the funding decision set at the start of this year for 2014/15 is ordered to be quashed. The judicial review has told the council to go away and do it again. It is a complete defeat for the council”.
The Conservative-controlled council also stated, “This is a complicated case and Torbay Council will now carefully reflect on the judgement, its implications and what further action needs to be taken. It would be inappropriate to comment further until the matter has been given full consideration”.