Using A Home Care Agency Vs. Hiring Directly
For many aging adults who want to maintain their independence, being able to age in place with assistance from a professional home caregiver is the ideal choice. When they’re looking for caregivers, families often have to decide between finding, screening, and hiring caregivers themselves or working with home care agencies, such as Assisting Hands Home Care of Northwest Las Vegas, that have already screened, hired, and trained their caregivers.
Some families think it may cost less to hire caregivers on their own instead of working with agencies, but this makes them employers who are responsible for the caregivers they hire. Before making the decision to hire a caregiver independently or work with an experienced home care agency, families need to be aware of several significant factors:
- Home care agencies that employ caregivers are bonded and insured, and they provide workers’ compensation insurance for their employees, while independent caregivers who don’t work for agencies usually don’t carry their own workers’ compensation or liability insurance. If a caregiver who is hired directly is involved in an accident or other incident while performing his or her caregiving duties, the family or senior who employs the caregiver will bear the financial responsibility, which could cost thousands of dollars.
- Home care agencies have staff available who can replace caregivers when they aren’t able to work. Families who hire independent caregivers have to create their own backup plans in case the caregivers fail to show up or have to take off work for illnesses or emergencies.
- A client who hires a caregiver directly is responsible for providing training as well as handling any disciplinary actions, including dismissing the caregiver if it becomes necessary. A home care agency will handle all these responsibilities.
- Clients who hire caregivers directly have to be able to evaluate the caregivers’ experience and level of skill. This is particularly important if the senior requires a high degree of personal care or is living with mobility limitations or serious conditions such as Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, or dementia. High-quality home care agencies train and test the caregivers they employ, so they’re able to verify their experience and skill levels.
- As the employer, a client who hires a caregiver independently is legally responsible for managing payroll taxes, filing all the appropriate tax forms, and verifying the caregiver is legally allowed to work in the United States.
- By law, the client (employer) is responsible for filing payroll taxes, tax forms, and verifying that the employee can legally work in the U.S.
The team at Assisting Hands understands that in today’s tight economic times, saving money and using resources wisely is more important than ever. However, the client should carefully consider the risks of hiring a caregiver directly instead of working with a home care agency.