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I lost my job in April 2014, had to move in with a friend of mine, who at that time was working overseas, he also lost his job in Feb 2015, when i moved in, i had to look after his mom, who is 84, as she had series of mini steokes and also dementia. I take care of her, do the cooking, cleaning, ironing, shopping, laundry, run errands for them both. When i moved in i had just received my pension from the company i was dismissed from, i bought a car and a foodtrailer as means of income, but after a year and six months had to sell the foodcar, as i just dont have the time to continue with it as i am looking after his mom, and doing all the other things as well. Also when i moved in, i paid R50 000 to have the roof of the backroom fixed as it had rain damage and leaking, and i had to fix it in order to store my furniture there, after a bit more than a year, i moved out, but within 2 months i was back, continuing to do everything. I dont have the use of the fixed room now for storage and had to store my furniture at my parents house in a garage, its getting damaged there with water and also rat infestation. So i have "paid" and "lost" the money i spent to store my things in the room i paid to have fixed. I hardly get time for visiting my kids saw my kids in December 2015, and see my family maybe once a month on a saturday, provided i take the elderly lady with me when i go visit. Her other son and daughter refuses to look after their mother, even for a couple of hours. I often feel like i have no life and i cannot leave her on her own. She refuses to go to a care centre, as we also have no money for that. She receives a small state pension, and i am honestly to my wits end here. We are battling to keep head above water, as both her son and I are still rmployed, but get no help from the siblings. Her son asked me to find out what my remuneration package would be, in order for me to arrange a meetingwith her other two children, as i have been doing this now for almost three years now. I love the lady and dont want to dissapoint her and leave her to own devices as nobody else are willing to look after her. I buy food and prepare all meals, but not paying rent as i am taking care of her. Could you plase advise on what i could tell them with regards to my salary package? Thank you

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In my opinion, there is nothing worse than living too long once you have become a burden to yourself and to others. My mother lived to be 97 and it was a terrible last five years for her and me. She just decided to stop eating. Got into bed and did not eat. It took 15 days to reach heaven. She would still be here if she had not made that choice. This is the only thing that comforts me some now....knowing I can do the same if I still have my wits about me. Old age and those that care for the elderly is not for sissies. I read these posts and I am mortified at how we have to end our lives. The older we get...the less popular we get and rightly so.
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ferris1 posted: Never do anything without a contract when it comes to patient care

BUT people don't think about contracts and are fxxxxxxcked

Then again so many of us just don't think
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Here is an article that I found on the Aging Care website regarding caregiver contracts... at the end of the article is a sample of a contract.

https://www.agingcare.com/articles/personal-care-agreements-compensate-family-caregivers-181562.htm
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How can I get ANYTHING in writing? I can't even get anyone to TALK about helping in anyway. There has got to be something for proof of performance.
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Never do anything without a contract when it comes to....it is shocking when you encounter "I never...."
Quoting one of my favorite contributors to knowledge network groups
Attorney at law Kevin P. Keane:
"agreements not reduced to writing, are NOT worth the paper they ain't written on."
Also always look at "Frail Elder Waivers" ....
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When I did a bill for the family which was never paid, here is how I figured ot out. I figured out what a home aide would make and tacked on 15.3% for self employment federal taxes, looked up comp code, and figured out state self employment taxes and liability, then tacked on 25% for overhead costs to get an hourly rate (an agency would take a base salary and mark up the wage 44 to 50% to cover everything). Anything I did which utilized my degree, I charged $75 to $100 an hour which I would charge regular clients.
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there is no amount of money that will be worth it thru the years!! your life, your health and the stress this will cause is NOT worth it!! you should leave and go home to your parents house! goood luck
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You should look into what it costs in your area for similar care. I live in California, and I pay about $18 per hour for every hour that the caregiver is in the house with my mother. So if they live in the house, then it is $18x24=$432 per day which comes out to about $12,960 per month, but that is for someone to work in 12 hour shifts and actually stay awake all night to be available. It's really not necessary except after surgery. In my area, assisted living is about $6,000 to $8,000 per month for one person. That does not include medication which would fall under what is called "memory care", meaning to make certain that a person with failing memory does all they need to do, such as taking medicine.

If I decided to get a full time arrangement, then I interviewed one lady who would work for $4,000 per month for living in 6 days per week plus I would have to pay for medical insurance, probably about $800 per month plus 15% for taxes on top of the $4,000. Room and board would not be taken into consideration as we have to put her up and provide food since she would be living with mother.

The downside for caregivers is that if they work for an agency, the agency charges around $22 per hour but they take about 50% of that, so the caregiver gets $11 to $12 per hour (until the new minimum wage for California kicks in which will take a couple years).

The caregivers are all licensed CNAs. They provide help with daily activities such as bathing, dressing and bathroom, and they do mild household chores such as cooking, dishes, straightening up the kitchen, changing the bed, some laundry, helping with the pets, grocery shopping, driving to appointments.

I'm sure that expenses vary around the world. California may be quite expensive, but there is a very good labor supply so it may cost less than other places.

I don't understand why some people are telling you not to ask for a salary package. The lady's son is asking you for the information, so it would be odd not to provide the information. The best way to find out is to call local agencies as an interested customer and ask what would it cost to get their service. Then if there are assisted living with memory care or nursing/convalescent homes in your area, you should also call and find out what the cost is in your area for a person in the condition of the lady that you are helping.

Then put the numbers down and show the family how much money they will be spending without you. It is probably going to be a large enough amount to put a scare into them. Then you either offer to work for the same hourly rate as the agency or make them a monthly stipend offer.

Do not take out your room and board from your income. That is not the way that it is done. If I have someone living with my mother, then I pay them a fixed amount for a fixed number of days per week, and some kind of paid vacation. Some get 1 or 2 days off per week. Then I would have to hire an additional person to do the weekend caregiver work so that she will not be left alone.

Everything you do such as grocery shopping, cooking, cleaning, those are all the chores for which caregivers are paid, at least in California. I don't know where people live that they expect those things to be done for them for free.

As a live in caregiver, you should receive a salary and should not be responsible for any expenses. You might be able to go to small claims court to get the money back for the roof as that would have been a loan to help someone else benefit their property. Of course, once you take someone to court, you will not be friends.

As far as recouping past wages for the time you have put in, you will have to be dealing with incredibly ethical and generous people to get paid in arrears. It's highly unlikely because they will not have known what it would cost. Your best option is to do your due diligence know. Provide them with the cost information. Then let them do what they want.

If they chose not to give you a salary commensurate with your area, then you should walk. Once you have explained your value and provided proof, then you have to stick up for yourself. Your friend should still give you a good reference, and you can find another family in need of help who will pay you what you are worth.

Your attachment to the elderly lady is beautiful and remarkable. If you have the money and time to devote yourself to her care a volunteer effort, you can make the choice to do so. But do so with your eyes open. Understand your worth and find out if the family will compensate you accordingly. You have given them several years of your volunteer work. No one could ask more of you. Don't look backwards at how much you've lost. Be certain to move forward to a more equal and fair arrangement with this family or move on. We are each responsible for how we let people treat us. Remember, money is not bad, it is how we set value and trade services.
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Riana67, I noted you wrote R50 000 which tells me you live in South Africa.... Correct? Thus, you paid over $3,000 US dollars to fix the roof of a friend's house. Sounds like the friend didn't pay you for the cost of the repairs.

This situation isn't stable, too many things could change even if you were able to finally start receiving a salary. The family might think down the road since you worked for zero pay, why should they pay you now. They see you as needing a roof over your head.

Make it a lesson learned to first have a signed contract [how many hours per week you will work, and the hourly rate] before doing this again. I say, cut your losses and go back to your family.
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Your situation is heartbreaking--you paid THEM $50k to fix THEIR roof? And they don't pay you for your care of them.

Hm, no talk of a contract so I bet this was all "between friends"....and that can get sticky.

I worked Elder Care for a few years, for an agency, so they took the lion's share of whatever they were billing out. I made $8.50. After a year I got a 50 cent raise. Along the way, the family "tipped" me every month , as mom got harder and harder to care for. I still was making only about $12 an hour.

When we had paid private care for daddy, it was $20 an hour. Even that didn't seem like enough. It's that hard on the caregive.

Honestly, this isn't your family, you are being taken advantage of in a big way and you should probably get out.

The difference between "service" which can be wonderfully rewarding and "servitude" which can be demeaning and depressing--is only a heartbeat apart. Service uplifts us, servitude drowns us.
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she's not your mother....why are you there giving up your life??? don't you have anywhere else you can go??
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Sorry, you don't get a "salary". You are paid "room and board", and if you moved in without a written contract, you are up a creek. Never do anything without a contract when it comes to patient care. Either stay and help out, or move out and live your own life. You have two choices.
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My 95-year-old morhter is at home with CNAs 24/7 at an average of $24/hour (what we pay the agency). The CNAs get about $14/hr, with no health benefits, sick days or vacation pay, but I assume the agency has to pay the employer's share of SS. Start with this number for 24 hrs, then deduct what you'd be paying in rent, share of utilities, etc. You should be reimbursed for the mother & son's share of the food and supplies you are buying. If they won't agree, for you own health, you need to move out and on with your life. I visit Mom for 5-14 days once or twice a month. She has agreed to pay me for the 10 hours/day, since we only have the CNAs for 3 hours in the morning when I'm there (so I can get out and run, get groceries, etc.). I'm wrecked after 5 or days, because Mom gets up 4-7 times during the night to use the toilet, ask for water, adjust the blankets, etc., so I don't get much rest. I do this because she's getting better care than she would in a nursing home. She's run through the money she had set aside from the sale of a rental home. My brother thinks she should go to AL or a NH now, but I just can't put her there, to lie in a wet diaper overnight. But I can't do this forever; she could live to 100!
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Personally-I think you deserve anything she can afford. I care for a 92 year old mother with Alzheimers 24/7 (no other siblings are willing to help) and at my age it is more difficult. My life is basically sacrificed for hers-and no, I don't feel wonderful that I am "giving back" like the ridiculous drug commercials portray in their warm and fuzzy ads. Alzheimers is a very difficult, depressing disease to live with. I have already told my daughter to definitely put me in a nursing home if I develop dementia-a quality of life situation I would not choose for myself or my children. I have priced out the cost of getting some 'respite' care and it is very high. $500-600 for 24 hours of mostly companion care to get away for just one day and night. I haven't found an assisted or nursing home that have availability for a week or two and that would cost thousands of dollars out of pocket. I read she would need a doctor's referral to get it, but her doctor was like 'good luck with that!." Dementia care in an assisted living is around $4,000+ and nursing care is around $5-6,000 a month. I can't really put a price on the cost to my own mental and physical health and the toll this is taking on my family and relationships. The financial cost is what I am basically saving the taxpayers and the government-for each month I keep her off medicaid and out of a nursing home. And yet, YES, in the event I start the Medicaid process, they will want receipts etc. for every penney. And require that I have a written caregiving agreement with my mother stating what I should be paid. I understand there can be good reason to 'protect' the elders from financial abuse, but she is getting better care then she would in a $10.000 a month private facility. It is so skewed at times. I would rather have my life and freedom back than any amount of money 'others' would agree to.
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Good Luck. The only people that think we should be compensated are the caregivers. Everyone else has their hand out. Watch the resentment you will have to deal with if you actually put a number to what you do. I priced around to hire someone to do what I do.(minimum wage is not what they get) I used that number...the S***T hit the fan, no conversation just a lot of guilt play...now we are truly alone...sad but true in my case
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I am an LPN, I lost my job 4 years ago. Also 4 years ago, I was forced to file for guardianship for mom, because she has audio hallucinations as part of her dementia. She had been committed 3 times, and eventually she would have been put in a state facility. It cost 90K for 9 months of the facility and attorney fees for the state and ours. I own my own condo, but taxes are 8,800 a year here in NJ. Mom receives SSA and small pension of $1400.00 a month. I am struggling paying my taxes and maintenance fees etc. I cannot sell because we are transitioning in my 55 community and will take a 50K hit. I am on NJ Health insurance and have been recently diagnosised with breast cancer. Can I receive any money for taking care of mom. Things over the last 4 years are very difficult, and I kept 10K to bury her. Any advice? My doctor said I should go to SSA office, and she will fill out any paperwork if needed. But disability takes approx. 3 years. This is the toughest job I have even had, I took a great job in FEB, 25 miles away, and mom had another CVA as the caretaker never showed up that day. I am at a brick wall for awhile now! Help!
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Ask for the minimum wage in the area where you live, for actual hours of caring for her. That means feeding, dressing, bathing and transporting. Sorry but cooking, shopping, laundry and cleaning you do no matter where you live. Then deduct your share of the rent and utilities and food.
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