5 reasons to sign caregiver agreement

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The high value of family caregivers is undeniable.

An estimated 65.7 million people in the United States provide care to loved ones in need, according to a 2009 study from the National Alliance for Caregiving, done in collaboration with the AARP.

Just how busy are those family caregivers?

Thirteen percent of caregivers provide 40 hours or more of care per week, which is the equivalent of a full-time job. Another 13 percent spend 21 to 40 hours per week assisting loved ones in need of care.

One way to compensate an adult child willing to devote so much of his or her time caring for an ailing or aging family member is through a caregiver agreement.

The agreement is essentially an employment contract between the caregiver and the recipient of care, says Michael J. Amoruso, an elder law attorney in Rye Brook, New York. A caregiver agreement stipulates a caregiver’s tasks, the hours spent caregiving and financial compensation for the family caregiver.

Here are five important ways a caregiver agreement can help your family.

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