Q:

How do I get paid to care for my elderly mother?

A:

In certain cases it may be possible to receive financial compensation for providing care to an elderly family member, according to the American Association of Retired Persons. Some possible options include state-administered programs such as Medicaid, which vary greatly depending on location; stipends sponsored by Veterans Affairs; or coverage from a private long-term care insurance policy.

Most Medicaid programs provide waivers to facilitate direct pay from federal funds to individuals giving elderly care to a family member. However, AARP affirms that the elderly family member must meet income requirements to participate in Medicaid.

The University of California, San Francisco, describes how most caregivers are often unpaid for the physical assistance and emotional support that they provide. Although it is not always possible to receive direct financial compensation, numerous free resources are available for caregivers and elderly family members. This includes meals delivered to the home, local community center programs for the elderly and home health services.

AARP states that caregivers may qualify for certain tax exemptions and deductions. For example, an individual who provides more than 50 percent of the care for an elderly parent may be eligible to claim the parent as a dependent for tax purposes. Also, certain medical expenses may be deducted.


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