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I'm a long distance caregiver that lives 2 hours away from my mom. We've just hired a new private live in for my mom. My mom has schizophrenia and is in her early 60s. Her day to day needs are mainly companionship, meds, and housekeeping. As long as she takes her meds she's mentally stable. Also she is generally in good physical health. I've offered the caregiver one day off a week at her choosing as long as she finds a replacement. Whats confusing is my mom is in this strange middle stage where she doesn't necessarily need to be baby sat but still needs someone around the house for companionship, housekeeping, and transportation. I've created somewhat of a schedule by making sure she takes her meds for am and pm, and having her cook her breakfast, lunch and dinner. But I also explained to my caregiver that she doesn't necessarily need to bring my Mom with her everywhere if my Mom doesn't want to go. Or if she needs to take time off for dr. apps thats fine. But I'm still wary that I'm adding too much flexibility and if there needs to more be structure. And if so how do I create it. I understand caregiving is such a hard job so I want her to stay sane. But I also want to make sure she doesn't take advantage of the situation or starts bending rules while I'm not there. I was just thinking about giving her 2 hour breaks during the day with one day a week off. My Mom has never had a caregiver. This is new for our family as my Dad just past away last spring.

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For the record you state that you live in California. You need an elder attorney to review your arrangement fast. Both you and the in-home caregiver have legal rights - and if you violate the rights of the caregiver, you could have all kinds of trouble from the labor board, IRS, and state agencies.
For the record:
The Domestic Worker Bill of Rights (AB 241)
Summary of the Law
In 2013, the Legislature enacted and Governor Brown signed the Domestic Worker Bill of Rights.* This law extends overtime pay rights to certain personal attendants working in the home who were not previously entitled to overtime pay under California law (Wage Order No. 15, governing household occupations). Personal attendants covered by this law are now entitled to overtime pay at 1.5 times their regular rate of pay for any hours worked in excess of nine (9) hours in a day or in excess of 45 hours in a week.
*California Labor Code sections 1450–1453 and 1454.
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Set up a similar structure to what you had with the agency. I would have a detailed list of her responsibilities daily and weekly, which you would need to go over together. Our agency provided a binder (which was kept above the fridge) with a detailed care plan, as well as daily duty sheets that the caregivers simply checked off as tasks were completed. It also gave them a place to write any concerns and for you to give any extra instructions.
As someone who has worked in lower tier employment I tend to get prickly when employers appear to give off an attitude that we are all merely drones, less trustworthy and less deserving of respect. While there is no doubt some people are less than good employees I feel being included as a valuable member of a team whose input and opinions are welcomed can go a long way to building a positive workplace environment.
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I get what you're saying. But what I'm dealing with is her leaving last night from, 5-11. My mom's meds weren't given, dinner wasn't made. This woman isn't working all hours of the day since my Mom on her own is somewhat independent. Its just where do I find the middle ground between allowing her freedom to have her own life while making sure she meets her responsibilities and doesn't leave my mom by the wayside or unattended all the time.

This is a job I'm paying her to do. We agreed one day a week and have no problem calling an agency or finding a replacement myself. My mom will also be attending day care, where she has the time off for two half days. But this is confusing. With the agency, I had a similar arrangement, there was structure in place and it worked.

Her going in and out of the house all the time leaving my Mom unattended at night is not what I had in mind.
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Uh, aside from all the legalities mentioned by gladimhere, what stuck me when I read your post is that you have "allowed" this person one day off a week as long as she finds a replacement. Sorry, but no. The wording of you post tells me that you are not seeing this person as an employee who needs to have a life of her own separate from your mother and her needs.

LOL vegaslady, your answer popped in while I was thinking, trying to find an answer that avoided the word slavery...
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This sounds like slavery rather than employment. Get a lawyer for a contract or consider a different type of living arrangement. I doubt if this will work out long term. Won't the caregiver want to have a life too?
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Is this an agency or self-employed caregiver? If she is private setup a contract through an elder law attorney. You will be required to pay taxes, social security, etc. A live in is considered an employee. Save yourself a lot of potential trouble by spending the money for an attorney to set this all up for you. Agency caregiver is someone else's employee, so the financial concerns are very likely eliminated.
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