The ease of hiring the caregiver is one of the bigger differences when working with a home care agency vs. a private caregiver. When looking for a home care agency, it is a very simple process. Finding an independent caregiver, on the other hand, can be a challenge. It is analogous to hiring an employee. One must write up a job description and post that description in various locations. The family and the care recipient will want to meet with the caregiver to “interview” them, and many interviews may be required. However, the difficulty in finding independent caregivers is one of the main reasons families opt for home care agencies instead. There also can be issues related to call outs, vacations and changes to caregivers schedules and without an agencies back up support can leave families without care during critical times.
A rigid hiring practice is critical as well as you want to make sure your caregivers have been fully vetted. Below is just a sample of what Cottage Caregivers provides families to ensure the quality of the caregiver:
Experienced Caregivers, HHA’s & CNA’s
Companion focused approach
Completion of Caregiver Exam
National background checks
Other major issues related to hiring caregivers privately, relate to taxes and liability. Families used to have the option of hiring the caregiver as an independent contractor (and therefore, the family would not be responsible for payroll taxes, withholdings, etc.). However, this is no longer an option for families, as the IRS has ruled that caregivers must be classified as employees, not independent contractors. The family must make sure they are following all unemployment insurance, workers compensation policies, state taxes as this can cause major headaches down the line. This also goes for having the proper insurance liability for any private workers in the home.
We hope this helps and reach out Cottage Caregivers for any questions you have related to working with a professional and experience home care agency!