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Who has done this, and how did it go in your experience?

I am a paid care giver for both parents in late eighties. They live nearby and I arrange meds, make 4 meals a week for them, take them to doctors appts, clean do laundry etc etc. My siblings either work full time or live out of town. I very much appreciate being compensated. It’s time consuming and emotionally exhaustive at times.
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I am currently a "paid caregiver" to my 93yr father. Every situation us different. I took a LOA from my job in April when he took ill and nursed him back to health. Nothing too serious, be lived alone and was forgetful and wasn't eating/drinking properly and ended up in the hospital with dehydration. I live in Florida and dad lives in Michigan. I took my LOA and spent the summer with dad till we (me and my brothers)had a plan. Dad is now currently with me in florida for the winter. I was the one who was best suited for the job as we didnt want dad in an assisted living. I am also dads poa/health surragate/trustee.
It's not for everyone. I drew up a plan/contract with my wages and duties and we all agreed. I get paid thru my father's Trust. Yes you can and should be paid if applicable. If there is no Trust, there are programs out there to help you get paid..VA, Medicaid/Medicare..do your research.
Having a family member that you can put your trust in, is knowledgeable, and your parent knows, is an honor to have. And it's an honor to do the job. There are assistance that can help with caregiving. Get everyone involved. Make a plan, it's not for everyone. Yes there are agencies you can hire. But like I said, every situation is different. I'm able to leave my fulltime job and be with my father fulltime. I do reach out to support groups and I ask alot if questions. Between me and my fathers doctor we are doing great. I get to spend everyday with my dad, he has been diagnosed with dementia so that can be challenging. But i educate myself, read up on it alot, talk with other caregivers and counselors/doctors. If things get to be too much than we'll deal with it at that time.
I am a paid caregiver. It's an honor to do so. But it's not for everyone. You do what's best for your situation.
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worriedinCali Jan 16, 2020
Medicare is not a program that will help OP get paid. They do not pay family members.
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There is no amount of money that anyone could pay me to be a full-time caregiver. If being paid, then the family will expect the caregiver to be able to be faster than a speeding bullet, more powerful than a locomotive, and be able to leap tall buildings in a single bound. That means taking on the chores of 3 full-time caregivers every single day. Hello, burn-out.

Caregiving is exhausting work. It is better to have one 8 hour shift, and have someone else come in the next 8 hour shift, and again for the 3rd shift. Otherwise, I have read where up to 40% of family caregivers, especially one caring for a love one who has Alzheimer's/Dementia, will die leaving behind the love one they were caring.
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I am the primary caregiver for my mother. Medicaid will NOT reimburse a family member, nor will long term insurance policies.

I assume you will be living with her or she with you 24/7. If your mother agrees she will need to pay you cash and going rate is about $15 to $18/hr. You absolutely will need respite or you will burn out in just a few months. Plus you will need to shop. I cannot see siblings not being okay with it. If so then ask them to split the time with you. As for your ability to do the job, there is no doubt. Hired caregivers are rarely RNs or CNAs anyway and if they are they usually ask $20 to $25/hr. You know your elder better than anyone. You will learn what she can and cannot eat etc.

Understand that if you choose to do this you will be giving up outside income(including paying into SS), a personal/social life, free “you” time, and you become the cook, housekeeper, driver, launderer and keep track of her meds and doctor appts. It’s a full time job of about 110 hours a week. And that’s not counting 8 hrs a night for sleep, which hired caregivers don’t do if they sleep over. They get paid for the time they’re in the home

Most homeowner insurance policies will cover anyone who lives in the house if you get hurt there. But you will need to maintain your own health coverage.

This is is a “labor of love” not a job. I tried for 6 months to do it alone and realized I couldn’t do it alone. Even with a sibling helping with doctor appts and outing. I was fortunate my mom paid for long term insurance so my sister worked on that and it finally kicked in. I now have a hired caregiver 35 hours a week.
If I back out what I would pay for room and board and the hours a caregiver is here it comes to me making about $6.50/hr.

Remember, as your mother ages she may get dementia and that puts a whole new light on your situation. She will get confused and afraid of her memory loss, as she feels she is losing control. This job will never get easier just more complicated. From my perspective, if you’re doing it for the money, don’t do it. If you’re doing it because she needs it and you care money becomes a non issue. When you shop for her get your own personal items too. Don’t expect new clothes (you won’t need them anyway) and make sure she is okay for you to have an occasional visitor because you WILL need some kind of outside conversation.

Good luck and think very very hard about this chapter of your life.
Love and light, Sabrina
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worriedinCali Jan 20, 2020
Medicaid does in fact pay family members to be caregivers. You are in California and our Medicaid program called medi-cal has a program called in home support services that does pay family caregivers.
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I am a paid live-in caregiver for my mom. We live together in Washington state and I dont know about how other states work. But my mom is receiving retirement (SSA) social security benefits. It's about 1400.00 a month. She qualified for medicaid and therefore was eligible for the COPES program. COPES, for short, is a Washington State Medicaid (Apple Health) waiver program designed to enable individuals who require nursing home level care, to receive that care in their home or alternative care environment, such as an assisted living residence.
My moms case worker determines how many hours per month a caregiver can work and be paid to assist her (me). I can work up to 140 hours per month at 15.50 per hour. This is paid by medicaid thru a 3rd party payroll website. I have health and life insurance available and also have taxes taken out of my checks just like any other job. I am also a union member.
Things have been going ok for the last 2 years but now my mom is to the point where she can't be left alone. She has respitory issues and can go into respitory failure very quickly due to carbon dioxide buildup. I have 2 adult sons who both work and live with us, so thankfully there's always someone home if I need to go shopping or run errands. But this is getting too hard for the 3 of us to manage. Tensions are high and stress is always present. I think it's time to look at putting my mom in an assisted living home. I've done the best I could but it's so much harder than I would have ever imagined. I will never be a caregiver again unless it's for one of my children. It's that hard. I'm not sure if you're thinking about becoming a caregiver yourself or if you're asking because you're thinking about hiring a family member as a caregiver. But this is my story.
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PatienceSD is mistaken. Medicaid does pay family members.
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I did try this for my husband, it did not work out, too many no shows and family disfunction.
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NeedHelpWithMom Jan 17, 2020
I get it, Dolly. I didn’t get paid and everyone tried to tell me what to do. Even if I had been paid, still would never have been worth it.
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It is easily enough done. Write a caregiver contract. Spell out the duties and hours, also the wage compensation.

someone will have to hire a payroll processing firm to handle all the withholding etc. with just one person, it will be cheap enough to do this.

now, on the practical side.....I found that family members and close friends would slack off...taking advantage of the whole situation because they are close.

my rule...whether hiring or renting. Avoid family and friends. They end up feeling entitled. You need to start the relationship on a strictly business basis, this cannot be done with family and friends,
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Cece55 Jan 16, 2020
I generally agree about the family & friends... but I am an RN and so it is a "professional" thing... except I will be taking a great pay cut.... to be able to have my Mom as my only patient.
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Seems you are asking can you pay yourself as care giver. - Of Course! and it probably best that you do. It avoids problems and resentment later.

You need to have a negoitated agreement - just like you would with a stranger or another family member. What are you going to get paid for doing?

Your payment should be no greater than the Fair Market Value. Of course, it can be less, but it should never be more. I would avoid getting paid in heirlooms or inheritable items to avoid family squabble about taking all the stuff.
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When my over-90 mother still lived "independently" in her condo, I wasn't a paid caregiver. I had to drive her places, mostly, which took hours of time. When she was hospitalized and I was there during the day, I informed my out-of-state POA brother that I could no longer keep it up without compensation. He offered to give me back-pay for the 2 years prior that I had to take her places, and I jumped at that. So I figured an approximation of my past hours, and kept track from that point forward. No taxes were taken out, as it was a "gift" from the trust to me. (There was no chance of Medicaid qualification, so an official contract wasn't necessary.)

It's very important to be paid as you do the caregiving, as any future claims on any inheritance could be problematic (and sometimes there isn't any inheritance left). One of my brothers wanted to wait until the trust was settled, but I said no. The trust documents read that anyone contesting the four way split between my brothers and me would get nothing. So if I started demanding more than my 1/4 after her death, I could be cut out entirely (not that I think any of my 3 brothers would have done that).

I had mentioned compensation to my mother, but she got very angry at me and said, "You don't pay family!" So I waited until she was no longer competent, and my brothers agreed that I should be paid (and the two POA brothers came up with the same hourly pay that I did).

I was paid $20/hour.
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