According to a 2006 MetLife Study, at least 60 percent of employed caregivers, reported making work adjustments because of caregiving.

Child caregivers are facing financial stress. Numerous studies indicate that child caregivers spend about $5,500 per year on the person they are tending to. Additionally, about 57 percent of caregivers are between the ages of 40 and 64. Consequently, caregivers are balancing job and family responsibilities.

According to a 2006 MetLife Study, at least 60 percent of employed caregivers, reported making work adjustments because of caregiving. Nine percent left the workplace and 10 percent reduced their hours. For those still employed, the loss to employers runs into the billions of dollars.

Mary Rose McBride, vice president of marketing and communications for Lifespan, said that caregiver issues aren't on the radar of many companies. "We need to get where we are now with child care with elder care."

Also, we need to change the work culture. David Wingate of Senior Life Care Planning, a Maryland company that advocates for senior and their families, states ”How many times do we see employees leave work because of a child: sick, doctor’s visits, parent teacher’s conferences, football and baseball games etc. However, if ask your Employer or Human Resources for a couple of hours off for taking care of your parents, you receive a  totally different negative reaction.

Employees who qualify for the federal Family Medical Leave Act can under certain circumstances take intermittent unpaid, job-protected leave to care for a spouse or parent who has a serious illness. However, most employees work for smaller companies that are not beholden to the Act.

If you are a child caregiver, you must formalize this caregiving relationship into a caregiving (Parenting) contract. Additionally, you must elaborate on the services and duties that you are performing. Also, state in the agreement the rate of compensation. This agreement may avoid a dispute with the Maryland Department of Social Services, whether the money was paid for services or a gift, if your parents apply for Medicaid.

Too often, we see cases where a child caregiver, has left their employment, and become a caregiver for their parents. However, the Department’s position is the money they received, from their parents, was a gift rather than for services rendered, because they did not have a Parenting Agreement. The consequences are terrible for your parents, if they enter the nursing home, they will be penalized ie denied Medicaid, for a time period, calculated by, dividing the amount gifted by $6800 (average cost of nursing home in Maryland). If your parents have no money to pay for the nursing home who is going to pay the bill?

There are ways of gifting moneys to become eligible for Medicaid, as discussed in a previous Blog Medicaid Myths of Gifting.

Also, in a previous Blog, the Va has funds, VA Funds – Pension and Aid & Attendance, , for Veterans to pay for home care and assisted living care,

Accredited VA Attorney David Wingate has written a FREE HANDBOOK on

VA Benefits , if you desire a copy please visit the Senior Life Care Planning's website or email at, or call the Frederick Office at 301 663 9230.

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