SDS & 'No Recourse to Public Funds'

We received a query regarding a parent carer who has come to Scotland and has ‘NRPF’ on their passport, asking if they could access SDS. We have been advised by the local H&SCP that SDS can be used in this circumstance, that they would follow the same assessment process and if there was an identified need SDS would be an option, although they would not permit an Option 1 and the reason for that is that someone’s immigration status can change at any time and therefore they do not think it would not be an ideal situation to become an employer. We would be interested to learn if anyone has had a similar experience and has perhaps more advice to offer. Many thanks

1 Like

Option 1 doesn’t entail becoming an employer

Thanks for posting this. I have no experience of this issue, I’m afraid, and have no idea if there is legislation/guidance that allows a HSCP not to issue a direct payment if it can be demonstrated that it is in the best interests of the person receiving social care to meet their outcomes, but the updated SDS Guidance has this:

People with No Recourse to Public Funds (NRPF) can access social services. It is a common
misunderstanding that people with NRPF status are restricted from accessing all public funds
and services, as UK Government’s NRPF policy restricts access only to some public funds under
immigration rules. Further information about our approach to supporting people who are subject
to NRPF to access support and services can be found in the Ending Destitution Together strategy,
jointly published by Scottish Government and COSLA in March 2021 at Supporting documents - Ending destitution together: strategy - In addition, good practice for social workers or other practitioners relating to the rights of migrant adults and children can be found at this website:

If a person who has NRPF is receiving social care and their immigration status changes, it should be up to the relevant services to respond to this change in their circumstances (rather than assume that this will happen). Obviously, there may be additional barriers for a person with NRPF and a direct payment may not be the best option for them, but if it is then I would hope that an arguement could be made. Best of luck!

1 Like

Hi Justin and Morag,
Many thanks for the further information Justin, I hadn’t noticed this in the updated SDS Statutory Guidance. This is on p.49 of the Guidance (footnote 100) if anyone is looking for this. You can access the Guidance here: Supporting documents - Social Care (Self-directed Support) (Scotland) Act 2013: statutory guidance -

A really interesting query Morag and it’s great to hear that the Local Authority are supportive of someone with NRPF status being able to access support for their needs, or the person they care for. It will be interesting to hear how the Local Authority approach their duties around the choice of SDS Option and whether any carer is offered an Adult Carers Support Plan.

Many thanks,

Thanks Justin, I noticed this within the legislation but thank you for posting

Thanks Mark for posting