What is the typical pay-rate for a untrained caregiver?

1 answer | Last updated: Oct 06, 2016
Lroberts asked...

My sister is a live-in caregiver for my mother and father who need 24/7 care. She is not, in anyway, trained as a caregiver yet she has called around and researched prices from various agencies such as HomeInstead, the local nursing home, and other care agencies and now pays herself out of our parents' savings at a ridiculous rate as if she is a RN. Are there standard pay rates for in-home care for those that are untrained versus those that are trained? By the way she is calling the pay a gift on her income taxes versus wages. What can happen in that circumstance?

Expert Answers

Merrily Orsini, MSSW, was a pioneer in the business of providing geriatric care managed in-home care. She currently serves on the board of the National Association for Home Care and Hospice and is Chair of the Private Duty Homecare Association. She holds a master's degree in social work and is a nationally known writer and speaker on aging, elder issues, and in-home care.

Researching comparable pay rates would have been my answer to finding out how much to pay. Caring for two people is always more expensive than caring for one. Also, providing 24/7 care brings overtime into the equation. There are laws governing wage and hour, state, local and federal tax withholding requirements, and a slew of other requirements regarding work conditions and employer responsibilities. This also sounds as if family finances are an issue. Please consult an attorney and an accountant to keep your family safe, and to plan for wise usage of funds, and to get the appropriate care for your parents.