Paying a family member to care for an elder – what to know

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Feeding the trend: the high unemployment rate, the rising cost of nursing-home care, an aging population and a 2006 change in Medicaid law that makes it harder for people who wish to qualify to give away assets. (Individuals are subject to strict limits, which vary by state, on the value of their assets in order to qualify for Medicaid benefits.)

When caregivers make financial sacrifices, elder-law attorneys say, it is often appropriate to compensate them. Some 37% of caregivers surveyed by the NAC in 2007 said they had quit a job or reduced their hours to accommodate their responsibilities.

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