Monday, May 21, 2012

Requirements of a Care Agreement

A care agreement is a formal agreement between two parties. One party is providing services. The other party is hiring said individual to provide said services. A care agreement
• must be a formal contract between parties;
• must name the parties involved in the care agreement.
• must outline service and duty terms.
• must outline payment terms.
• must outline breach of contract terms.
• must outline termination of contract terms.
• must outline length of time the contract is valid/active.
• must allow for mutual amendments or changes to contract.
• must be signed and dated by all parties (parent(s) and family member(s)).

Friday, May 18, 2012

Elements of Care in Care Agreements

Care agreements can be customized to each family’s particular situation. The following are basic elements of care that can be explained in a care agreement: 
• Personal Assistance
• Personal Hygiene
• Meals
• Laundry
• Housekeeping
• Transportation Services
• Yard Care
• Shopping
• Social Contacts
• Religious Needs
• Intellectual and Emotional Needs

Monday, May 14, 2012

Purposes of Family Care Agreements

There are many good reasons for families to enter into care agreements, particularly agreements in which a family member is paid for services rendered. 
First, a care agreement spells out for the parent, family, and third parties the details of care a family member will provide to an ailing parent. Caring for a parent even occasionally can be a physical, time-consuming, emotional, and financial burden for a family member. Acting as a parent’s full-time, primary caregiver can be deeply burdensome. A care agreement spells out details of care in a way that is illuminating and helpful for everyone involved.

Second, when a parent needs help, family members often rally around and provide service for their parents free of charge. But caring for a parent can be a significant financial burden, not to speak of the physical and emotional burdens (in taking time off work or in taking time away from their own family duties, for example). A wise parent will set forth in a care agreement details regarding compensation of family members for care services the family performs on the parent’s behalf.

Third, a memorialized care agreement prevents family resentments and disagreements regarding said payments. Misunderstandings and hurt feelings often occur in families during the time an aging parent is being cared for by family members. A carefully drafted care agreement protects in numerous ways a family member serving an aging parent.

Fourth, a care agreement has Medicaid advantages. Without a formal care agreement, the funds used to pay family members are treated as part of the ailing parent’s assets or income for Medicaid eligibility purposes. On the other hand, if an ailing parent is paying a family member (or anticipates paying a family member in the future) for services, a formal care agreement ensures that funds used to pay family members are not treated as the ailing parent’s assets or income for Medicaid eligibility requirements.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Family Care Agreements

A care agreement (also known as a family care agreement, personal care agreement, personal services agreement, care contract, etc.) is an agreement between a parent (or parents) and a family member (or members) in which the family member agrees to care for the parent and the parent agrees to pay the family member for the services performed on behalf of said parent.