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When a Caregiver Poses a Risk to Your Family

Envision this scenario: Your parents live at home with a private caregiver they have employed for some time. The family issues paychecks to the caregiver and essentially acts as the “employer”. Your parents and the caregiver are very fond of one another and all concerned are satisfied with the care. The caregiver, while attempting to transfer your Dad from toilet to wheelchair, sustains a serious back injury, requires medical treatment and is unable to work. Lacking worker’s compensation or disability insurance, the caregiver hires an attorney and sues the family for medical and living expenses that could be payable for years.

More than once, families have come to us with this risky situation: A beloved caregiver, in place for many years and very much enmeshed with those they care for, is not affiliated with a licensed agency and thus working outside Illinois regulations governing the caregiver industry. The caregiver is not insured and the family does not relish the role of “employer” for an unregulated worker.

The easy answer would be to simply replace the caregiver with a bonded, insured and fully supervised caregiver from a licensed agency. But Mom has come to love her caregiver and does not adjust well to change. Isn’t there some way to keep her without putting the assets at continued risk?

Yes, as a matter of fact, there is. Lifecare Home Solutions has successfully navigated these situations by hiring the existing caregiver and taking over the role of employer. The caregiver
must first pass our screening standards – she must be able to demonstrate that she can work in the United States legally, pass a background check and a drug screen. She must complete standard employment documents and receive caregiver education from us, as mandated by the State of Illinois. We are happy to furnish the required education at no additional cost to the caregiver or family.

Once the hiring protocol is completed, the caregiver is a Lifecare Home Solutions employee who receives paychecks from us. She is bonded, insured and supervised. A relief caregiver is provided when she decides to visit relatives for several weeks. All of her shifts are documented in our system and a care note is completed for each shift; if your parents have long‐term care insurance, these documents must accompany claims. The family pays invoices generated by a licensed professional home care agency and all parties are in compliance with state regulations.

The risk to the family’s assets has been mitigated, and your Mom and her caregiver can continue their affectionate and productive relationship going forward. Often, caregivers who have worked in isolation for years are pleased to have a supervisor they can call upon at any time of the day or night for support, advice and guidance. They also feel free to take a long‐postponed break to visit family because there is finally someone to fill in while they are gone.

Please contact us at 630-953-2154 to discuss the risks of unlicensed caregivers. We will gladly take the necessary steps to reduce the family’s exposure while preserving the comfortable, productive relationship your loved ones enjoy with the caregiver already in place. Please also call if you need to replace a caregiver, or if you are hiring a caregiver for the first time.

www.lcius.com

©Lifecare Innovations, Inc.

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