Getting Paid for Family Caregiving


by Joy Loverde

I received so many emails from people who are seeking ways to be paid for family caregiving that I felt it was important eldercare, finances, caregiver payto offer some of the strategies from my book, The Complete Eldercare Planner.

To begin, first review your own financial situation. This is an important step in the process. Shelling out money for parent care does not do any good if in the process we are jeopardizing our own future financial stability.  Discuss money-management strategies with a financial planner. With your own longevity in mind, calculate your net worth and outline plans to provide for your retirement needs.

The next step is to investigate the following family caregiver payment strategies:

  • Hospitals, social service organizations and adult education centers offer training programs for caregivers who, upon completion of the program, may qualify to be paid for their services. Call your local Area Agency on Aging to see if such a program exists near you.
  • If you haven’t done so already, investigate long-term care insurance – for you and your aging parents. Ask about a policy that will pay for family and friends to provide the care after they have completed a caregiving-training program.
  • The "Cash and Counseling" program for Medicaid enrollees allows participants to pay family members for their services. Contact your local agency on aging or department of social services for more information on government funding.
  • Seek the assistance of an elder law attorney and begin the process of putting estate plans in writing. If your mother owns property and has assets, your getting paid for family caregiving may have to wait until your mother’s estate is settled.
  • There are several programs that allow low-income family caregivers to care for their elderly relatives, most notably the Personal Care Attendant Program and the Adult Foster Care Program, which pays family members and others to provide care for elders who are Medicaid eligible and need help with their activities of daily living. Call the Medicare office for details or visit the Medicare website at

6 Responses

  1. [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by steve Joyce, elder care. elder care said: #eldercare Getting Paid for Family Caregiving | Elder Care ABC [...]
  2. Since you mentioned Long Term Care insurance, is there one you would recommend? How about Assisted Living insurance?
  3. admin
    Your Message<a class="replyTo" href="#comment-3173" rel="nofollow">@Sharon Butler:</a> I think I would talk to a reputable insurance agent in your area and go from there.
  4. Having to give up caregiving job of 19 years with same family where do I go from here?
  5. One should also consider meeting with an elder law attorney to discuss the establishment of a Personal Service Contract - the family member/caregiver can be the vendor, and the payment schedule is calculated based on services provided and the life expectancy of the elderly person. Life expectancy is based on the Social Security Life Expectancy tables.
  6. The first thing you will need to find out is does she have short term or long term disability as these are the first options to take time off and still receive some type of income. The FMLA (family medical leave act) as it is known only allows you to take time off but you do not get paid for the time you take and you can only take up to 12 weeks per year. She will need to go to the doctor to be eligible for disability and must provide a doctors note to the employer as well as the state for benefits. There are a lot of questions to be answered and the first one is for her to get to the doctor and find out for sure what her condition is.
  7. I am caring for my elderly Alzheimer's mother in my home. I was guided in the creation of an Elder Care Agreement/ Personal Service Contract. She has been paying monthly. As I file my IRS tax forms, I am reporting this as "Other Income" - but I am concerned that it may trigger self-employment tax consequences. Anyone know about this? Thanks