Monday, January 9, 2023

Does The Government Pay For Family Caregivers

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A& a Benefits And Housebound Benefits

Program pays family caregivers

A& A is another way veterans can get money added to their VA pension to pay caregivers.

Who Qualifies?

This benefit is available for any veteran who qualifies for VA pensions and meets one of the following criteria:

  • Requiring help from another person to perform activities of daily living
  • Having extremely limited eyesight even with corrective lenses
  • Being bedbound because of disability
  • Being in a nursing home

Housebound benefits also provide additional payment to the veteran for care expenses. Veterans are eligible if they receive a VA pension and spend most of their time at home due to permanent disability.

How much can you get?

The amount of increase to the veterans pension for A& A and housebound benefits depends on the veterans family and dependents. For 2021 :

  • A veteran with no dependents who qualifies for A& A receives an additional $9,307 per year in pension
  • A veteran with no dependents who qualifies for Homebound Benefits receives an additional $3,093 per year in pension

You can view the VA pension tables for veterans with dependent and veterans married to other veterans here.

How to Enroll

Visit the VAs website to apply for A& A or housebound benefits. Note that veterans can only be enrolled in one of these programs at a time.

Family Caregiver Tax Deductions And Credits

Although not a complete form of compensation, tax deductions and credits can provide some financial relief to family caregivers. Individuals with financially dependent parents can deduct medical and care expenses from their income in order to help reduce the tax burden of providing care. It is important to keep track of your care expenses as a family caregiver in order to take advantage of the tax deductions.

The ‘last Resort’ A Gofundme Campaign

Then there’s the “last resort” method my friend Sharon used to find much-needed funds to care for Rose, her 95-year-old mother: GoFundMe.

Rose’s health had been deteriorating, and early this year, Sharon began taking care of her mom full-time instead of working. Sharon tried helping Rose apply for Medicaid, but her mother didn’t qualify.

Desperate for financial assistance, Sharon decided to put up a GoFundMe crowdsourcing page. It included a photo of Rose with her beloved dog Sheba and explained Rose’s situation. To date, the effort has raised $1,300, which has let Sharon hire a respite caregiver for several hours a week.

A recent search on the GoFundMe site revealed several other similar COVID-related caregiving funding requests.

If you’d like to find out whether you can get paid to be a family caregiver, Lisa Gurgone, executive director of Mass Home Care recommends contacting your local Area Agency on Aging/Aging Service Access Point. You can find your agency by entering your ZIP code into the federal government’s online Eldercare Locator.

Once you find your local agency, Gurgone says, ask to speak with the Information and Referral Department about Medicaid and non-Medicaid programs letting family caregivers receive compensation or respite services.

If a family member needing care is a veteran or the spouse of one, contact your state Veteran Affairs Office and ask to speak with a Veteran Service Officer who can help you identify resources.

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How Many Caregivers Can The Eligible Veteran Appoint

The Veteran can appoint:

  • 1 Primary Family Caregiver , and
  • Up to 2 Secondary Family Caregivers

Eligible Primary and Secondary Family Caregivers can receive:

  • Caregiver education and training
  • Travel, lodging, and financial assistance when traveling with the Veteran to receive care

Eligible Primary Family Caregivers may also receive:

  • A monthly stipend
  • Access to health care benefits through the Civilian Health and Medical Program of the Department of Veterans Affairs if you dont already qualify for care or services under another health care plan
  • At least 30 days per year of respite care for the Veteran

Through County Veterans Service Officers

What States Pay Family Caregivers

County Veterans Service Officers may provide assistance in obtaining veterans benefits and can even help you answer your questions regarding the rules and regulations that surround veterans and survivors of veterans.

The National Association of County Veteran Service Officers even has an online locator that will direct you to your County Veteran Service Office or the Department of Veteran Affairs.

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Veterans Aid & Attendance And Housebound Pensions

The veterans pensions, which are called the Aid & Attendance and Housebound benefits, are programs specifically designed for wartime veterans and their spouses. How they can be used to pay individuals to provide care for their aging parents is a little complicated. It is important to understand that the dollar amount of pension that a veteran or their spouse receives depends on their current, non-pension related income. The second important factor is when calculating income, the Department of Veterans Affairs allows the beneficiary to deduct all care related expenses from their income. This can include the cost of personal care assistance provided by an individual or home care agency. Therefore, an aging parent can hire their adult child as a private caregiver. The adult child invoices their parent for their caregiving services, the parent deducts those invoices from their income, and the VA increases their pension check by the amount of the invoices. While confusing and seemingly roundabout, this approach is well documented, legal, and encouraged by many VA benefits experts. Learn more about the Aid & Attendance and Housebound Pensions or connect with a VA Pension planning expert to determine if your family is eligible and to discuss if either of these approaches can work for you.

Eldercare Financial Assistance Locator

  • Discover all of your options
  • Search over 400 Programs

Receiving Payment From Other Relatives

Seeking caregiver compensation from siblings or other relatives is a viable solution for some families. Depending on family dynamics, broaching the subject may be a touchy situation. Non-caregiving relatives may feel guilt at the burden youre shouldering, or they may not understand exactly how much is involved in caring for a loved one. Caregivers, meanwhile, may have resentment for other family members who arent participating in the day-to-day demands.

When discussing compensation with other relatives:

  • Try to avoid feelings or blame. Instead, focus the conversation on the concrete care needs and their costs.
  • Itemize all of the services you perform as a caregiver and the financial impact the responsibility has had on you.
  • Include average rates paid to outside aides for comparable home care functions so everyone can have a clear idea of what these services are worth monetarily.
  • Be flexible. Dont forget to explore all the options to reach the best solution. Other relatives may agree to take over some of the responsibilities to allow you the opportunity for respite and additional hours at your paid job. You can also split the costs of your compensation between multiple family members.

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Working While Serving As A Caregiver

Some companies are more caregiver-friendly than others. Your company may allow you to work part-time, have flexible hours, work from home, or provide additional time off. Or they may not.

Under the Family and Medical Leave Act, eligible workers are entitled to 12 weeks of unpaid leave per year. Some companies even have employee assistance programs. Check your employee handbook to see if your company has set policies. Go over the options with your supervisor and HR before you make any big decisions.

Is More Help For Family Caregivers On The Horizon

Comprehensive assistance for family caregivers of Veterans

Caregivers need for financial assistance is not going unnoticed. Hawaii became the first U.S. state to provide this benefit through the Kupuna Caregivers Act, which can provide up to $70 per day to cover expenses such as healthcare and transportation.

The bipartisan RAISE Family Caregivers Act requires the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to outline a strategy to help caregivers through federal programs, workplace policy changes, and more.

As of May 2021, eleven U.S. states offer paid family leave for caregivers, providing full or partially paid leave for caregivers who need time off to care for a family member. Though its currently up to the states to decide whether or not to protect these benefits by law, many political figures continue to advocate for making paid family leave mandated at the federal level.

Even if additional resources come to pass, the benefits received wont amount to the average full-time salary. But caregivers know that every additional bit of financial support can help adjust to this life-altering situation.

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Caregiver Support Is A Phone Call Away

Talk to caring people for practical caregiving information and help finding local resources/services by calling your local Community Living Connections/Area Agency on Aging or Home and Community Services Office.

  • The Family Caregiver Support Program is a service available to unpaid caregivers of adults who need care. Staff at local offices throughout Washington can give you practical information and advice and connect you to local resources/services that meet your needs. Services are free or low cost.

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How Can I Get My Caregiver Services Covered Through Medicare

While Original Medicare does not usually cover custodial caregivers unless these services are short-term and provided by medical professionals, there are some circumstances where a Medicare Advantage plan can provide this much needed coverage.

To start researching and comparing Medicare Advantage plans that may provide more comprehensive caregiving coverage, dont hesitate to contact our licensed insurance agents today.

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How To Access Government Programs For The Elderly

Access to assistance is as close as your computer or smartphone, and, in most cases, you can apply online. Start by visiting the following two websites that can help determine which of the above programs you and your loved one may be eligible for as well as any others that might be unique to your area.

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What States Pay Family Caregivers In 2021

How to Receive Pay when Becoming a Family Caregiver

Nearly every state offers some form of pay for family caregivers however, each of them has different criteria for this financial support. Making matters more complicated, funding for family caregivers can come from a variety of sources, including Medicaid state plans, employer-paid leave programs, home and community-based services , and self-directed programs.

Eligibility and pay for family caregiving may vary from state to state, so its best to reach out to your states health or Area Agency on Aging for more information. In this article, Ill go over some of the common funding sources and services that can assist family caregivers.

Pro Tip: Medical alert devices help provide peace of mind to both caregivers and individuals that need assistance with daily living tasks. To learn more about this technology, check out my picks for this years best medical alert system.

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Administration On Aging & Department Of Aging Services

Each state and county provides different services for the Administration on Aging. Some programs will provide stipends, reimburse caregivers for supplies, offer training, and provide respite. Paying for Senior Care maintains a list of Area Agencies on Aging and Disability Resource Centers thats searchable by state and county.

Can A Family Member Get Paid To Be A Caregiver

It should come as no surprise that becoming a caregiver for an aging or ill loved one can take a significant amount of time, as well as serious physical, mental, and emotional energy. In fact, assuming this responsibility can become so involved that it can essentially take the place of a full-time job. Often, this begs the question, do family caregivers get paid?

Technically, the answer to this question is yes, but the amount that a family caregiver can get paid depends on the type of assistance you or your loved one is eligible to receive.

Unfortunately, there are very few programs available that actively handle financial compensation for family caregivers. For example, Original Medicare does not pay for long-term care services, such as in-home care, custodial care, or adult daycare services, regardless of whether this care is given by a family member or a professional.

However, you may be surprised to learn that it is indeed possible to become a paid family caregiver under certain circumstances. Sometimes, family caregivers can obtain financial relief for specific needs, including respite care, food, services, and other goods.

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Through Your Local Area Agency On Aging

Your local Area Agency on Aging may be able to provide more detailed information on whether your states medicaid program will pay a family member to provide care to a Medicaid recipient.

In addition, your Area Agency on Aging will usually have additional information on federally-supported programs that aim to help ease the financial burden that caregiving can place on families.

A Common Question: Can I Get Paid

Medicare 101

Sima Schoen, national caregiver resource specialist at the National Center on Caregivings Family Caregiver Alliance, says the majority of the calls I receive are family members asking if they can get paid as caregivers.

It turns out, sometimes they can through a Medicaid-funded offering that can let some family members become paid caregivers.

While Medicaid provides long-term care coverage for people with a very low income, the Older Americans Act of 1965 was established to help Americans 60 and older with health issues who dont qualify for Medicaid but still need financial help.

The Medicaid program that compensates family caregivers is known as Medicaid Self-Directed Services. Its for someone over 60 who needs help at home and is capable of directing the caregiving process.

Every state and Washington, D.C. provide the self-directed option some states allow the person needing care to hire family members to provide it.

More than 600,000 family caregivers received about six million hours of respite care services.

The Family Caregiver Alliance provides a state-by-state list of these programs. You choose the state and click on Caregiver Compensation.

Many of the programs dont allow spouses or legal guardians to be paid caregivers, however. And reimbursement rates, coverage and eligibility vary from state to state.

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Area Agencies On Aging

For in-person assistance with exploring programs and benefits that are available to you and your aging loved one, contact your local Area Agency on Aging . Each AAA serves seniors, individuals with disabilities and family caregivers in a designated areausually a city, county or multi-county district. These offices are staffed by elder care professionals who are knowledgeable about every assistance program and service that is available in their area.

Gather as much information as you can about you and your care recipients health and finances and make an appointment to meet with a counselor at your AAA. The staff there can advise you on prospective programs and eligibility requirements and even help prepare the necessary applications and documentation. Visit the Area Agency on Aging Directory to find your local AAAs contact information and schedule an appointment.

Being Paid To Be A Family Caregiver

The DES Division of Aging and Adult Services offers non-medical home and community based services and supports for individuals that qualify through our aging contractors, the local Area Agencies on Aging . Caregiver support services may also be provided through the local Area Agency on Aging.

The DES does not offer any type of program or service by which a caregiver will be paid to care for a spouse, relative, neighbor, other loved one or another person. We are often asked the question about being paid to be a caregiver to someone in need. In order to potentially be eligible for this program, the person requiring care must already be receiving or be eligible to receive benefits and services under ALTCS programs and services. Then, the person wishing to provide the care would apply to become an employee of one of AHCCCS/ALTCS contracted home health care agencies after passing a thorough screening and eligibility process.

To apply to become a caregiver, call your local AHCCCS/ALTCS office at 417-6600 or find an ALTCS Office online.

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Government Assistance And Funding For Caregivers In Canada

Is there a caregiver allowance? Can I get paid to take care of mom and dad? I cant tell you the number of times I have been asked these questions. While I hate to be the bearer of bad news, my shoulders are broad enough to be this bearer. The only province in Canada that has such an allowance is Nova Scotia . Yes, you read that right. Nova Scotia.

Before you pack your bags and your parents, and head out to this fine eastern province, check out the federal tax benefits and insurance benefits that are available to all Canadian citizens. Bookmark this page, because its not if, but when, you are going to need this information. Did someone say financial stress?

Federal tax credits and insurance benefits

Here are steps you can take to minimize financial stress for both you as a daughter/son and for your parent:

Additional programs and funding

If your parent requires special equipment or assistive devices such as a wheelchair or walker, the following programs can help:

Government and charitable organization programs often change and evolve. It is a good idea to regularly check the above websites for the latest in financial assistance and support.

Bookmark this page. I would bet money you are going to need it at some point!

When Will Medicare Pay For A Caregiver

Matt Gaetz

For the most part, whether Medicare will cover in-home caregivers depends on exactly what type of care one is receiving. Keep in mind that to remain eligible for Medicare at-home medical care coverage, you will need to see your doctor fewer than 90 days before, or 30 days after, you begin to receive home healthcare services.

In the following scenarios, Medicare benefits may apply:

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