How do you pay (or do you) a sibling who is the caretaker of a parent who lives at parents home for free. The caretaker receives Social Security and lives in the parents home and does not pay rent, utilities or anything. We would have to pay out of parents money. Since there is some money in savings no one qualifies for public assistance or any other help. The parent has Alzheimer's and is now total care for the last year.

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Do you think that she is really living there free?

She is working her butt off caring for your guys mother. 24/7/365 total care.

Absolutely they deserve to be paid by mom and be provided a room and food for doing it.

Does your boss charge you rent for your space at work? Do you pay your share of the utilities? No, because it is standard operating practices to provide a safe, comfortable environment for people to do their work.

You should be grateful that she is willing to forfeit her life for moms, because that is what a caregiver does in these situations.

A fair, living wage with a contract to ensure this is wages and not inheritance.

Do what's right by your sibling and show how much you all value and appreciate the care and sacrifices, pay well and relieve the duties at least 2 weeks a year and days off every week.

I just assumed both were women, sorry if that is wrong. Good for you for asking about how to do the right thing.
Helpful Answer (12)

Yes, she should be paid. You will need to talk with an elder law attorney to draft a caregiver agreement so that the responsibilities and rate of pay are clear to all. Also, you will need to decide if you want a CPA to take care of salary deductions.

Think about about it this way. What would it cost in that area for 24/7 in home care? In my area somewhere around 10-12,000 a month. Think of the money it is saving as opposed to living in a facility. In my area memory care runs from $6,000-10,000 a month. These expenses are for the parent to pay and worth much more than room and board.

Don't do what my twisted sissies did and alienate the caregiver sibling. Instead support her and understand that she is doing a very difficult job that people are paid a fair wage for and that other family members are not able or willing to do. Be grateful that your parent is able to remain at home with a family member on a caregiver-patient ratio of 1:1.

Remember that parent's assets are first for their care, anything remaining after death is then for inheritance.
Helpful Answer (9)

Definitely pay your sibling for the caregiving that she/he is performing as that is her/his JOB or EMPLOYMENT at this time. Would you work for free room and board instead of a salary? Most likely not. Your sibling can work even while receiving SS (within a certain earnings limit) and she/he needs to be paid for the work that she/he is performing. 

You also need to plan for your sibling’s future. If your parent ever goes to a nursing home or memory care facility, then your sibling who is currently living with your parent will have to pay for the utilities and upkeep of the house out of HER/HIS OWN MONEY. Your parent's money can only used for her/his care at the nursing home or memory care facility.  If your sibling is only getting SS, then she/he has very little money that she/he can put into a retirement fund to be used for paying utilities in the future if and when the parent with Alzheimer’s has to be admitted to a facility.

I lived with my Mom for 9 years and received free room and board nor did I pay for utilities. I was listed as a “Dependent” on Mom’s income tax return because she paid for all of my food and clothing—everything. I did not work outside the home as my health problems limit the type of employment that I can do and we lived in a small town with very limited employment opportunities.  
Once Mom was admitted to the nursing home, ALL of HER MONEY had to be used for HER CARE at the nursing home. I had to use my retirement funds (I was not eligible for SS at that time) to pay for utilities, food, etc. Because of a miscommunication with the Social Service Assistant at the nursing home that Mom was in, I almost had to move out of the house into a 20 foot travel trailer as that is what I could afford to live in. 

Copy and Paste the websites listed below to your browser for further information about how to pay a family member and about family caregiver contracts.  There are government organizations that will assist with paying family members as caregivers.

You state that your parent has been total care for over a year, so you know that your sibling is not just sitting around twiddling her/his fingers doing nothing. She/he is performing the same work that a CNA does in a nursing home while caring for an Alzheimer’s resident.  Give your sibling some credit for the job that she/he is doing and support her/him financially.
Helpful Answer (8)

You may feel a bit hard done by that people have jumped down your throat in their responses. But trust me, you've got off lightly.

It's that "(or do you)" bit that really grates.

Have you as a family paused to consider what 24/7 care would cost if you didn't have a sibling prepared to make the necessary sacrifices?

And then, since this sibling is already enjoying the luxury of social security, you chip in that "or do you" and appear to begrudge the free rent and utilities and wow now even a possible wage on top. What next, turtle soup and gold spoons?

Try it yourself. I don't think you'll find the terms over-generous.

So, anyway. Yes, you do pay. How? Gratefully. How do you arrive at a figure? You can compensate the caregiver for loss of earnings, and relate it to what s/he would be making in his/her normal employment; or you can find out the market rate for agency caregivers and align the pay with that. Either of these will give you a baseline for negotiation, which you can then fine-tune.

You and/or other family members have Power of Attorney for your parent, have you?
Helpful Answer (8)

Anyone who wasn't family would be getting room and board "and" a salary - as well as days off.
Helpful Answer (7)

You can use a payroll agency that will provide all of the requirements to protect your parent and sibling. They charge a percentage fee, but all you have to do is turn in hours, then they process the payroll checks and do all of the quarterly and annual reports, they also provide all of the legally required insurances, ie worker's compensation and unemployment. They send a bill and it's all legal and parent is protected if they ever need Medicaid, there will be an employment contract to ensure the money is a valid spend down expense.
Helpful Answer (7)

mellowyellow, it is almost impossible to live on Social Security, thus another income is needed to help build up one retirement.

As another writer had written, the sibling isn't really living at home free. She/he is on call 168 hours a week. Please note that 40% of family caregivers die leaving behind the love one they were caring. This job is physically and emotionally draining. Especially since she/he is a senior taking care of an older senior. Your sibling will have his/her own age declines.

I hope you sibling can get some time off to breathe, to go to his/her own doctor appointments, to do some shopping for her/himself, etc. Who does fill in for the sibling?

The Agency caregivers in my area get $30 an hour. My Dad had 3 shifts of caregivers each day, thus the cost was $20,000 per month. Then Dad found out that senior living would save him some money, so he sold his house and used the equity for Assisted Living/Memory Care.
Helpful Answer (5)

Then maybe you should have asked that question. If you read what you wrote, your question was answered.

You asked how do we pay her or do you, not how much or what should we pay her.

Not knowing where you live there is no way to say this is the going rate for fulltime live in caregiver.

FF told you what she paid for her dad's 24/7 care.

Not sure why you are all snarky about the information provided, it answered your question. It also provided you information on how to pay legally.

Room and board is included when someone is a 24/7/365 caregiver and they get a salary, agencies charge a minimum of 22.00 an hour in Tucson and every hour after 8 is billed at time and a half.
Helpful Answer (4)

Moved in with my mother in 2002.... .did not pay rent, just helped her out after step dad died. She was able to stay home by herself. As time went on, she was no longer able to stay home alone. In November 2015. I quit my job to be full time care-giver.  The money I am paid comes out of my mother's pocket. I do not pay anything for "rent." My hours are 24/7, but take pay for only 4.5 hours per day. (Our contract says a minimum of 30 hours a week will be paid.) If she is still living when I begin to collect social security, I plan to still be paid. All withholding taxes and employment taxes are paid. Workers Comp rider is added to home insurance. Nothing is under the table. I am paid minimum wage which was my choice. BTW, the money is coming out of her accounts, but she is not the one doing the paperwork. Hopefully she will be able to stay at home for the rest of her life. The only break I have had in this time is to go to Dentist office, the a sister has come and stayed with her. Anywhere else i go, she comes with me. I did go out to do some yard work this morning, but had the baby monitor with me. 
At the time of her death, the house is to be sold, and proceeds to be split between five children. At which time, I will become homeless, so I am putting money away for that eventuality. Only one sister thinks this agreement sucks- she believes that "anyone would jump at the opportunity to do this for free rent." As long as Mom can stay at home, we will all have some inheritance down the road. If she had to pay someone else for full time caregiver, or move out to assisted living, money wouldn't last like it is. So that is how we are working it. And none of us can count on an inheritance, as her money is for her care as long as she needs it.
Helpful Answer (4)
pamzimmrrt Jun 2019
And when you need a vacation, let that lovely sister take over your duties for a week or so!
This is in addition to my prior response. I also take care of the payroll paperwork. Had to get a federal EIN, and also a state account number. Use a payroll software that cost under $20 when I purchased it. Make quarterly reports to the state, and estimated payments to the IRS. Have to file Schedule H for Household employment taxes, when yearly taxes are filed. Use a direct deposit set up. The time it takes is minimal after I figured out how to do it. Everything comes out mothers assets and we have records of everything. Paying me 4.5 hours a day is a real deal, in comparison to paying someone from an agency, or going into an assisted living. If the time comes that we have to look at a facility, that will be an option.
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