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My independent living facility says I can no longer utilize the individuals I have used for years. There is no medical care only transportation, computer assistance, house cleaning, companionship. They are individuals and not with an agency. The facility (a non-profit) that I pay for, no medicare assistance or anything else, says since they do not work for an APPROVED agency they can no longer help me. They are insisting that I utilize their APPROVED agencies that cost 2 to 3 times what I pay my girls. Can they do this? Don't I have the right to choose who I want to hire?


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What is the basis of them telling YOU who you can and cannot hire. I know of no such law. Check with a professional who is qualified and able to get to the bottom of this situation. You don't have any real facts and those you must have to get a handle on what you are being told. Get as much information as you can from everyone and then see an elder attorney and contact the local Office on Aging. I have a feeling either you are not being told the real true facts or someone is trying to scam you. Do NOT fall victim to that. Start asking questions and find out what is going on - in the meantime, don't do anything until you know what is going on.
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Reply to Riley2166
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When my mother was in an AL, "sitters" needed to have a background check. I think I'd ask what qualifications your help needed. It may not be much ( like be certified at CPR ) and maybe your people would meet their qualifications.
I really don't understand how an IL can demand who you hire!
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Reply to Resentfully
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It would be best to ask questions and fully understand why the facility is saying you cannot use these individuals any more. They should be able to say more than just tell you that you must hire from their approved agencies. My feeling is that you should not even have to ask this, but obviously you will! Although there is nothing in your contract, there might be, as others noted, liability issues (regular visitors are likely covered, employees who are not under contract with facility or approved agencies might not be.)

That said, you might want to read the following (copy/paste the link):
https://www.agingcare.com/articles/hiring-in-home-caregiver-affects-taxes-171023.htm

I tried several ways to look up any kind of restrictions that might impact hiring your own independent helpers. Several hits on the first attempt focused on how the IRS is looking at these kind of employees (if they earn over a certain amount, they are considered your employees, especially if they perform duties YOU determine and all kinds of tax implications and likely insurance, at least WC, come into play.) The second query gave me the above link. Check it out!
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Reply to disgustedtoo
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I will bet that, as someone stated, the Independent Living facility underwent some sort of audit process and was told that all caregivers need to have certain certifications ie CPR training, annual inservices, etc to be able to deliver “care” at the IL center.

But what I don’t understand is your girls are not providing “care” per se only companionship and escort/support your mom with non skilled needs. They are not misrepresenting themselves as “caregivers” and do not perform any duty that can be considered “care” in the definition required, say, in a NH. Your mother is essentially independent & the facility presents itself as an IL.

I don’t know why all of a sudden this is not allowed. Especially with no clause in your contract with them that specifically discusses anything to do with this.

So correct me if I’m wrong but your girls can be family or friends and continue on providing your mother with simply companionship & no hands on care like toileting, lifting or feeding her which in other SN facilities is required.

I would reach out to an attorney in elder law and have him review your mother’s contract & give you advice on how to proceed.

Independent living is just that. You are not falsely representing your girls as CG in the sense of say, a CNA.

You might have that lawyer look over exactly what that IL’s scope of care is, meaning what is the IL’s governing body rules if any in this situation, or what level of care they provide or the IL’s mission statement which in NH is often listed in the lobby or check for their complaint resolution process & discuss this with the IL complaint person and then go up the line if no satisfaction from lower level sources. Your mother has rights and responsibilities too- find out what they are to see if your mother’s R&R are being met. She has a right to have companions in to assist her to assure comfort in her living environment.

I hope this this works out for you and she is able to keep “your girls” because it is not fair to take away anything that impedes her comfort at her IL. You can argue that the center’s new policy endangers your mother’s well being in that she will have to mentally and physically change her routine and that this is not in your mother’s best interest. Maybe you can be grandfathered in meaning they can implement their new policy on new residents going forward.

Again, an attorney may help you resist this new policy or grandfather your mother in giving the reasons above.

Good luck and let us know how this turns out.
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Reply to Shane1124
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Isthisrealyreal Jan 4, 2019
Shane what is inservices?
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What would stop someone from coming and “visiting” you? I don’t understand why they’d care if someone helped you whether or not you paid them or not. Can you keep the caregivers you like and just have them come help you as if they were just visitors?
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Reply to Dadsakid
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Do you have renters' insurance? My independent living facility requires us to have it. If so, I think your liability insurance in your policy should cover you if anything happened to one of your workers. Check with your insurer. I have had help similar to yours, some with a person from an agency, but also with an independent contractor. My very conservative independent living community has no objections. You are going to be hard-pressed to find someone from an agency to give you computer assistance; let your community administrators know!
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Reply to caroli1
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Go to care.com.
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Reply to Heidindsrespit1
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COMPANION861 Jan 4, 2019
They also work through that website with other people. We just want to continue them working for me and others in our building.
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Greedy degenerates ... just want $$$$$.
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Reply to OhMyMe2
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Especially given that there is nothing written out in your contract about this it seems to me you have a couple of options, both covered by other's here already. I just wanted to point out if you go the "upfront" route and try to figure this out with the facility it seems an important point here that we all know how hard transition can be, especially on out older LO's. This is a person or people she knows well, likes and has a routine with, having them continue the assistance they have been providing you and your mom can only help everyone, including the facility, make the transition smoother. It's not like these companions are providing any medical care or administering meds. Maybe they need to be reminded that it's the best interest of their paying residents that should be first and foremost.
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Reply to Lymie61
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I'd contact your local area agency on aging or especially a long-term care ombudsman if there is one in your area. You need to get to the bottom of the issue, maybe a quick consult with an elder law attorney. I can say that something is coming back to me from a while back, and it had to do with an actual change in law re employees of assisted living facilities in OH...in this case I think the place sought out the designation for some reason...but then the employees were covered by very particular requirements. In short, by location, it was feasible that a long time client could still get our services, but because our employee did not have all of the requirements or would have had to follow them.
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Reply to gdaughter
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If there is nothing in writing in the contract then I doubt that they can enforce the rules they are trying to impose on you at this point.
You can get the people that you have hired background checked and that may alleviate some concerns. But you could remind them that background checks will only flag if someone has been convicted it will not flag if someone as been accused or even merely arrested.
I suppose technically these people work for YOU not your mom, I wonder if there would be a legal difference there.
Not to be cynical...but I wonder how much of a "kick-back" the Non-Profit facility gets from the "approved agencies" when one of the "approved" employees is hired?
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Reply to Grandma1954
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Tothill Jan 3, 2019
Here is Canada there are varying levels or degrees of Criminal Record Checks.

The lowest level just looks at convictions, but more in depth ones look a great deal deeper into a persons past and include arrests, Social Services investigations and more. Often a credit check is included, especially when working with vulnerable adults.

I have had ones at various levels, depending on where I was working/volunteering.

The higher level ones are more along the lines of Security Clearances, not only do they look at your past, but your family’s and close friends too.

The flaw in a Criminal Record Check is it is based on a point in time. Whereas Security Clearances are flagged going forward if there is a change.

i can understand OPs frustration that a system that has worked for a long time is being disrupted.
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Call their bluff. Keep sending in your caregiver. Smile politely when they say anything. Throw all their notices in the garbage.
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Reply to careinhome
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Our “cousin” helped us with Mom for almost 7 years. Starting in Mom’s home, then mine, AL, & finally NH. She has a very large extended family. Wink wink...
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Reply to kdcm1011
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I really appreciate the above responses, and am going to think about it more... and look into nanny insurance! This is simple visiting and going back-and-forth, companion/visitor stuff. I come and go doing the same. What is my coverage while I am on their site? Probably none.
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Reply to Zdarov
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Isthisrealyreal Jan 3, 2019
If you or anyone fell because the community floor was wet, they would have to file a notice of injury and there general liability insurance would pay for your injury, all medical and lost wages, etc. It was a negligent act on the facility that caused the accident. If your worker was injured moving you or mom they would not be able to go after the facility, as there was no negligence or anything to do with the facility.

The stupid thing is that these insurances don't care if you have 5 or 50k visitors it is all income based.

They must be getting some kind of kick back from the "approved" agencies.

I don't think i would ask for an ammendment to the lease, this makes it binding and they may have not even thought about that.

I believe that you have to be notified in writing at least 30 days before contractual changes, the thing is, if you don't respond saying that you don't agree and you want something different than it becomes legally binding, you agreed by not disagreeing. You have to respond in writing, I always send signatures required or if hand delivered ask the person receiving the letter to sign, date and print their name as record of delivery.

You may have to get renters insurance that covers guests in your unit.

I pray for your sake that you are able to continue to have your helpers . Get creative when looking at solutions.
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My mother is moving into an independent living facility, and two women (my friends, who I happen to pay) have been coming and going with her as they please, they are my guests and her guests. I’m an only child, so I need people besides me helping.. sounds like your situation too. If there were other relatives or friends could they all come and go and do these things? I think so. Stand your ground, and I’d be as plain as possible without going into deep detail! These are friends, what arrangement you have with them is your business. Good luck!
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Reply to Zdarov
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there are legal liabilities for the facility if the person you employ falls--or claims to fall--on their property. They are probably hiring people who are licensed and have workman's compensation insurance. Yes they cost a lot more but they are insured. When I hire a sitter for my mom I go through an agency just for that reason alone.
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Reply to cetude
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I would ask to see an admendment to your lease/contract Because if not in your lease/contract, it ain't so. Ask why now. You have had thecsame people for a while with no problem. That the cost of an agency will put a burden on ur finances.

I can maybe see the people who are on the premises all the time but not the transportation. Call your local Office of Aging and see what they say. Ask if the know of a Legal aide agency you can consult.
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Reply to JoAnn29
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You might want to speak to them directly. If your contract doesn't put any restrictions on who you hire this may be a new policy. Ask what the reasons are for the new policy. Maybe if your workers are covered by a certain type of insurance or receive certain benefits they can be approved and you can continue to use them.

My money is on some lawyer reviewed the facility and noticed a potential liability in having uninsured workers on the property.
In fact, you might want to check with your homeowners or renters insurance to see what would happen if a worker injured themselves while working for you. If they don't work for an agency, they won't be covered by worker's compensation. Many home insurances specifically state they will not cover injuries sustained by contractors working on your property.
I know of someone who is involved in a huge lawsuit because the contractor who was taking down a tree on their property got seriously injured. The homeowner did not know that the agency he hired only hired freelance contractors who were not covered by the agency's insurance. They then found that their homeowner's insurance specifically didn't cover that type of loss. The case is still progressing but they stand to lose a lot of money.
If you have free lance workers you really should ask your insurance agent about "nanny insurance" that would cover them if they hurt themselves. Or maybe you can arrange to get them worker's compensation coverage by becoming their employer.
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Reply to Marcia7321
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My guess is that if you hired through an Agency the Agency would have to do criminal record checks, First Aid training etc and would be in part liable if anything goes wrong. They can also be sure an Agency is covering the payroll taxes and workers compensation, healthcare etc.

It could be a liability issue if those things are not covered for people who are employed in the facility. And although it may not have been in the original contract, that does not mean they cannot enforce it now. Especially if they have undergone a review by their insurance company.

I would sit down with the powers that be at the facility and ask for the reason for the change in policy.

I have a friend who works in a care facility that offers many levels of care. She is employed by the facility and had to undergo significant training and has to do updates annually. She is an Activities Aide, so no medical care. He son just got hired as a custodian and although he has very limited contact with residents, he too had to undergo a significant training regime.
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Reply to Tothill
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It says nothing regarding who I hire.
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Reply to COMPANION861
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If you lived by yourself in your own home you could hire anyone you like, yes. But being a resident of an independent living facility you have to abide by their rules. You must have signed a contract when you moved in. Have you checked it to see what it says about hiring outside help?
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Reply to Eyerishlass
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COMPANION861 Dec 31, 2018
There is nothing in in about who I hire at all.
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