Should there be a contract with a caregiver?

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What should be included in the agreement with a 24 hour caregiver?

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I think it would work better if you had three caregivers working an 8 hour shift each with whom you have a written contract with. Otherwise, one 24/7 caregiver will be burning out one right after another.
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I would think that as the elderly person's condition(s) progress, increased duties might be needed, and someone the contract would have to have room to include increased pay for more duties, or a way to address if the job "grows" to be more than just companion care (for example). It's one thing to do light cleaning, cooking, some bathing assistance, and a doctor appointment here & there, and quite another to be dealing with dementia/extreme forgetfulness, and total incontinence/changing adult diapers, and total feeding care.
Perhaps some type of annual or semi-annual review.
And of course what type of written documentation will the caregiver have to fill out?
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The contract should include a clause how to end the contract, such as: Upon two weeks written notice, either party may terminate the contract without further liability on either party's part"
All duties must be carefully spelled out including bathing, dressing, cooking, cleaning, wound care and when to call 911 and emergency contact numbers.
Wages and room and board must be specified.
Time off and vacation pay or other benefits must be spelled out.
Any arrest or criminal charges should trigger immediate termination.
If the caregiver is driving, proof of license and insurance is critical.
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Is this caregiver from an agency or someone you hired yourself?

The contract should be very detailed and very thorough so there are no misunderstandings later on and you should go over the contract with the caregiver prior to her starting in case she has any questions or concerns.

I'm just going to throw my 2 cents in and I'm sure others will come up with other items that need to be addressed in a contract.

-- This is a live-in caregiver? The hours you expect her to work should be detailed. The hours she has off should be detailed. You should include that on her off hours she is not expected to grocery shop or otherwise do errands relating to her job. Her hours off are her hours off.

-- She is allowed at least 6 uninterrupted hours of sleep at night. If you can't provide her with this then maybe hiring two 12-hour caregivers would be better.

-- Her rate of pay as a beginning caregiver. She should earn time-and-a-half for major holidays (New Year's, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Christmas Eve and Christmas Day).

This is not a comprehensive list but the more detailed the contract the less likely there are to be problems and hurt feelings.
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