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Things to Know When Your Child is Also Your Caregiver

November 1, 2013


It is very common for a child to provide care to an aging parent in order to allow the parent to continue to live at home. A child is most commonly the caregiver because the parent will not agree to hire professionals to assist with the activities of their daily life. Typically, the parent has concerns regarding privacy, and their child is the only caregiver they will trust.

When a child provides care to a parent, it is best to establish a care agreement. A care agreement is a contract that outlines the care to be provided as well as any payment to be made for the care provided. The care is typically provided until the parent passes away or is in need of care that cannot be provided at home. Tasks performed by the child usually include personal care assistance, grocery shopping, meal preparation, accounting services, transportation to and from appointments, housecleaning and laundry services. It is recommended that the care be paid for on an ongoing basis as the care is actually provided.

The care agreement should set forth the exact services that the child will provide as well as the location where the services will be provided. The parent’s “space,” as well as any “common areas,” should be detailed. Additionally, the agreement should set forth whether the parent or the child is responsible for paying monthly utility charges, as well as yearly expenses, such as property taxes and homeowner’s insurance. The agreement should also address responsibility for property maintenance, including but not limited to, needed repairs, mowing the lawn, …

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by: Gina M. Barry

November 2013

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