Polls find that 13 to 22 percent of family caregivers also work. Most work an average of 34.7 hours each week, but 56 percent work 40 or more hours each week. Balancing work and duties as a family caregiver is challenging. It’s also very misunderstood. These are some of the most common mistruths people have about working and caregiving.
Bosses Will Always Let You Have Time Off
Federal law does require employers to provide unpaid time off to “covered” employers through the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 (FMLA). The thing people don’t understand is that not every employer will qualify as “covered.”
To qualify, you must have been employed for at least 12 months and at least 1,250 hours in those 12 months. That breaks down to just over 24 hours a week. If you’re working two part-time jobs to get your 40 hours a week, you won’t qualify for FMLA.
Some jobs are also disqualified from FMLA benefits. Elected officials are one of the exclusions. Companies with fewer than 50 employers also are excluded from FMLA. Finally, employees who have a high salary are also excluded.
The Right Schedule Makes it Easy
Scheduling may help, but it won’t always be easy. You’ve had a particularly rough day at work and stop at your parents’ house to cook dinner and get them settled for the night. As soon as dinner is on the table, your dad becomes agitated and pushes his plate to the floor. He doesn’t like salmon anymore.
Sometimes, no matter what schedule you create, your mom or dad may be hard to work with. If dementia is present, they can be downright cruel at moments. It’s draining and also hard to stay motivated for the rest of the week.
You’ll Get Paid for the Care You Provide
There are very few means to a family caregiver getting a steady paycheck for the care they provide. Grants can help, but grants that are out there don’t often offer more than a few thousand dollars. Aid and Attendance from the Veterans Administration may offer some pay, but it may not cover the income you’d lose if you quit your job.
Medicaid’s Cash and Counseling program, also called Attendant Services Program, may offer limited payments in some situations. You have to talk to your state’s Medicaid office. Not every state offers it and there are restrictions that may disqualify your parent from qualifying.
Elderly care is one of the best ways to balance your job with the help your parents need. You can help them when you’re available on weekends or your days off. When you have to be at work, you’re able to focus solely on your job duties. Your parents don’t have to be alone. Elderly care aides help your parents when you can’t be there.
IF YOU OR AN AGING LOVED ONE IS CONSIDERING ELDERLY CARE IN LAS VEGAS, NV, PLEASE CONTACT THE CARING STAFF AT GOLDEN HEART SENIOR CARE OF SUMMERLIN. 702-800-4616.