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Hiring a Caregiver for Your Special Needs Loved One

When your loved one has special needs, you may find yourself deciding between a specialized residential/daycare facility and care in your home. Between estimating costs, scheduling, and assessing needs, hiring a caregiver to work with your family member may feel like an overwhelming task. But as you dig deeper, you’ll find the benefits may just be worth it!

#1: Personalized care pays dividends

One-on-one attention provided by a home caregiver gives your family member the care that they need and deserve. If there are unique needs that your family member has, a caregiver will get to know those and can ensure they are met. Hiring a home caregiver also gives your loved one the opportunity to remain in a known and comfortable environment where they are able to bond and connect with one person, rather than multiple staff members who rotate through a care facility. Building a relationship like this can be very beneficial for the recipient of care.

#2: Care comes with Tax breaks

Hiring a caregiver to work in your home makes them your employee. That means you are required to pay them as such, with proper taxes and payroll taxes withheld on each paycheck. But did you know you may be able to offset some of these costs with tax breaks like Dependent Care FSAs and the Child and Dependent Care Tax credit? Social Security benefits or Long-Term Care insurance may even cover some of the costs of in home care.

#3: Overtime Exemptions may be available

If your caregiver provides only companionship services, they may be exempt from overtime requirements. State rules may be more restrictive, but generally speaking if less than 20% of your employee’s time is spent providing personal care services (bathing, dressing, grooming, etc...), hiring a companion caregiver directly is allows you to Those who are not “companions" are covered by the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) as hourly employees entitled to minimum wage and overtime. Make sure you outline overtime rules and other specific job duties in your work agreement. This protects you in the event of a wage dispute and also ensures that there is no confusion on duties, benefits, or other important details about the position.

Finding the right caregiver for your loved one is a big decision. Partnering with a staffing company that can place a qualified caregiver in your home is one way to ensure you find the right person. Once you do hire someone, understanding the ins and outs of household payroll and taxes is complex. If you are not sure you have the time to figure it out, contact HomeWork Solutions for help! We’ll do all the payroll and tax filings for you, so you don’t have to lift a finger.

Reposted with a permission from Home Work Solutions (

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