THE GOVERNMENT's new social care cap will hit the average homeowner in St Helens North five times harder than someone with a million pound home - research from Conor McGinn MP has found.

Ministers narrowly pushed through an amendment to England's social care regulations last week, which introduced a policy that no one would pay more than £86,000 towards their own care during their lifetime.

However, the policy changes - which take effect from October 2023, also mean that any council contributions that some residents may receive for their care costs, will not count towards the cap.

In other words, those from poorer backgrounds will have to pay as much as someone from a much wealthier background, and fund the full £86,000 themselves.

Those with assets of less than £20,000 will receive additional help to reach the cap.

St Helens Star: The new cap has met a wave of criticism that it will disproportionately affect those from poorer backgroundsThe new cap has met a wave of criticism that it will disproportionately affect those from poorer backgrounds

As less wealthy people will be forced to use a higher proportion of their assets to fund their own care in comparison to richer individuals, this could result in some having to sell their home to foot the bill - something the Conservatives promised would never happen in their 2019 manifesto.

The move has proved controversial since it was announced, with Kier Starmer calling the plans a "working class dementia tax" and Andrew Dilnot, economist and author of the report explaining that he is “very disappointed” by the changes that “finds savings exclusively from the less well off.”

Researching the practical implications of the plans, Conor McGinn, the Labour MP for St Helens North, has found that residents in his constituency will be hit five times harder than someone with a million pound home.

With the median house price in St Helens North £145,000, this means that the average resident could lose almost 60% of the value of their property in order to fund the social care cap.

In contrast, those with homes worth £1 million would lose just 9% of their assets, and still be left with £914k to pay for their care and pass on to their families.

Although the Conservatives promised that nobody would have to sell their home to pay for care, the new proposals suggest that this may become a reality for people in St Helens and across the wider North, where average property prices and wages are significantly lower than those in the South and London.

St Helens Star: Labour MP for St Helens North, Conor McGinnLabour MP for St Helens North, Conor McGinn

Conor McGinn, MP for St Helens North, said: "Boris Johnson’s working-class dementia tax hits people in areas like St Helens North the hardest.

“His unfair social care con will punish some of the poorest working families in our area, forcing many to sell their homes to foot their care costs while millionaires get to keep almost everything.

“It's yet another broken promise from a Conservative Government that time and time again doesn’t give a single thought to the circumstances or needs of communities like ours."