Self-Directed Support/Direct Payment

What is Self-Directed Support?

Self- directed support (SDS) allows people to take more control over the money available to meet their agreed care and support needs. The general principles of SDS are involvement, informed choice, and collaboration. SDS allows you to make choices about your support based on the things that are important

  • to you, and to the goals they want to achieve
  • to helping you stay safe and well

SDS is often described as the personalisation of social care. Personalisation means that people are actively involved in shaping and selecting the services they receive. 

How can I get SDS?

If you already get support, you can contact your social worker or care manager. If you do not get support but think you may be eligible you should contact social services in the local authority in which you reside. 

If you are offered support, there are four options for how you may receive it:

  • Direct payment – where an individual chooses their support and makes the arrangements for their support 
  • Individual Service Fund – where an individual chooses their support and the local authority makes arrangements for the support on their behalf
  • Local authority arranged support
  • A combination of the above 3 options
A supported person must have as much involvement as they want in assessment of need and provision of support; they must also be provided with the assistance they need to express their views and make an informed choice. This includes both information from the local authority and the provision of advice and information services.

SDS Policy and Legislation 

Find out more about SDS at the Scottish Government website and the Self Directed Support website.