What is an ORA or Licence to Occupy?

This new service has been created over recent years. This service relates largely to residential care suites and units, it effectively combines elements of residential care with a retirement village option. From a ‘technical’ perspective these suites/units are more like living in your own home than in a residential care facility. Although they are certified for residential care, the prospective resident usually ‘buys’ the suite/unit (rental options may be available) before taking up residency. ‘Purchase’ costs vary widely. This type of ‘purchase is usually a capital contribution and you do not generally ‘own’ the suite/unit. The operation of these suites/units is generally governed by the Retirement Villages Act 2003 and, in some instances (e.g. where a subsidy is involved), the Age Related  Residential Care contract (ARRC) between the operators and the DHB.

Before you sign a contract you need to make sure that you get independent legal advice and that you understand what the future will be like for you and your money. If you are going to be paying privately for your care do you know what happens if you run out of money? Does the facility contract allow you to stay in your suite/unit if you require a subsidy? The contract should be comprehensive and cover scenarios like this.

See also The Ministry of Health website ‘What is a Licence to Occupy.’

Note: Usual needs assessment criteria apply for anyone applying for a subsidy — see question 'What is an assessment.'

Updated 17/09/2012

© Eldernet 2014