The Seimas on Thursday adopted respective amendments to the Law on Social Integration of the Disabled in a vote of 115 to one.

Pursuant to the amendments, a personal assistant could be a person who provides personal assistance to a disabled person with whom he or she does not have a close family relationship.

The need of personal assistance will be established on a case-by-case basis.

A decision whether a disabled person needs such personal assistance will be taken by a respective local authority, which will also have to organize such assistance and ensure its quality.

Pursuant to the law, help provided by a personal assistant will not be fully free of charge. A disabled person will have to cover up to 20 percent of the costs of such service but the amount cannot exceed one-fifth of his or her income.

The amendments will come into force on July 1.