Most seniors prefer to stay at home as long as possible rather than move into a nursing home. For many families, this means eventually hiring a caregiver or care management team to look after an aging or disabled relative. There are two main ways to hire someone: directly or through a home health agency/care management company.

Hiring directly
When you hire a caregiver directly, you need to consider all the tax and liability issues. As an employer, you are responsible for filing payroll taxes, tax forms, and verifying that the employee can legally work in the United States. If you pay $2,300 or more in wages in 2021 to any one employee, you need to withhold and pay Social Security and Medicare taxes. If you pay more than $1,500 in wages in 2021, you need to pay unemployment taxes. In addition, a private caregiver may not carry his or her own liability insurance or workers’ compensation. If an accident occurs on the job, you could be responsible.

The benefit of hiring a caregiver directly is that you have more control over whom you hire and can choose someone whom you feel is right for your family.

Hiring Through a Professional Care Management Firm or Home Health Agency
When you hire through a firm specializing in care, the firm/agency is the employer, so you don’t need to worry about tax and liability issues. They take care of screening the employees, doing background checks, and providing insurance. In addition, a licensed home care agency or care manager must provide ongoing supervision to its employees. It can help the employees deal with difficult family situations or changing needs. These companies  may also be able to provide back-up if a regular caregiver is not available.

In addition to serving as a professional trustee, Assured Trust provides an extra level of support by providing care management services. For more information, please call 913.521.9200.