Parents dedicate their happiest and most productive years to their children. They not only satisfy their offspring’s basic needs for food, shelter, and security but also provide for them the proper education for a flying start in life. But parents also need to figure out elderly care for their parents.
7 Tips to Help You Find a Suitable Care Provider for Your Family
In today’s fast-paced world, young and working professionals seldom find the time to care for their elderly parents personally.
Therefore, finding the right elderly caregiver for your aging relatives is of critical importance to their security and well-being.
1. Compose a job ad
Composing a concise but informative job ad is the first thing to do. You should clearly list the working hours, the hourly pay, and if the successful candidate must have relevant medical training.
The job ad should also specify if the caregiver needs to accompany your relative on vacations or rehabilitation courses and how many days off they’ll have a year.
When it’s ready, reread it lest you might have left out some essential job details.
2. Where to post your ad?
Having composed a compelling and concise job ad, you have to find the right places to post it.
Whether you post the job ad in the local newspaper or search popular elderly care sites and forums in your area, staying local is essential.
If you find a caregiver from two states away, they may need to move in with the care recipient. Also, you may have to pay for their tickets to fly home during vacations.
3. Does the care recipient need to be attended to 24/7?
If your relative needs specialized care 24/7, you’d better consider a suitable facility to provide it rather than hiring a caregiver.
Hiring an elderly care specialist is a good idea only if the recipient needs assistance for up to 8 hours daily.
4. Run a background screening on the shortlisted candidates
Suppose you’ve shortlisted three or four suitable care professionals. You must run a background check on each of them to find the best applicant.
Pay special attention to criminal and court records. If they’ve been charged with violence-related crimes, especially something as serious as a protective order violation, you might want to consult with a protective order violation attorney to understand the implications.
You should also ensure that the selected candidate doesn’t have police registrations for drug and alcohol abuse.
Observe state and federal laws
Under The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), you must ask for the shortlisted candidates’ consent to check their criminal records. No such permission is required for social account checking.
5. An independent caregiver or a home health agency?
Depending on the care recipient’s health status or changes, you should decide if they’d benefit more from a home health agency or an independent caregiver.
The latter option is more suitable for elderly individuals who need partial assistance and unspecialized care services.
If you go for it, you automatically become the caregiver’s employer with all the ensuing duties and responsibilities.
6. Determine a fair pay
Although the federal minimum wage for home employees is $7.25 per hour, you should expect to pay them between $15 and $20 per hour. If you hire a qualified nurse, the pay rate can increase further.
7. Register as an employer
If you don’t want to pay an agency to find an elderly caregiver for you, get ready to cope with lots of red tape.
Here are the most critical steps you should complete to be in good standing with the federal and state regulators.
1. Get an EIN
If you’re going to be the caregiver’s employer, you’ll need to apply for an Employer Identification Number (EIN). You’ll need it to file IRS and SSA forms for your employee.
2. Get a state tax number
You’ll also need a state tax ID number for unemployment insurance and a separate ID if your state has an income tax.
3. Set up mandatory insurances
As an employer, you must set up Workers’ Compensation Insurance and Disability Insurance for your employee.
4. Check the candidate’s eligibility
You must file a USCIS Form I-9 to see if the selected elderly care provider is allowed to practice in the US.
5. Report your new hire
You must report your new hire to the state’s authorities within 20 days from the contract’s start. Check your state administration’s webpage to see where to file the report.
Let’s wrap up
You can take two paths if you need to hire an elderly care professional. You can either contact a specialized agency to do the heavy lifting for you or hire one yourself.
In any case, the importance of pre-employment background screening should not be underestimated. If you want to work with an agency, they will screen the candidates for you.
If you’d like to hire a home care provider independently, you should screen the candidates on legitimate and trusted background check sites like information.com.