Four Commonly Ignored Benefits of Hiring a Licensed Home Care Agency vs. an Independent Caregiver

By: Rosemarie Tamunday Casanova

Realizing the time has come to hire a caregiver for an elderly loved one can be an emotional time and will also raise questions and concerns. You want to provide the best in home senior care possible that will keep them safe and comfortable, and while it may be completely clear that help is needed, deciding on the type of care is not always easy.

With so many choices ranging from live-in caregivers, CNAs, personal care assistants, and home health aides, it can seem overwhelming. However, whatever type of care your loved one requires, medical or non-medical, the two main options for in-home care involve choosing between a licensed home care agency or an independent caregiver.

For most of us, cost is a major deciding factor too, and although a privately contracted individual may seem more economical initially, you need to weigh-in on everything, including the financial and safety aspects.

When you opt for an independently contracted caregiver, you are essentially taking on the role of an employer, which involves payroll, taxes, filing requirements, and liability issues. In addition, you’ll need a way of verifying the person’s eligibility, qualifications, trustworthiness, and background check. After all, this individual will be in your home, caring for a family member, so precautionary measures are a must to ensure your financial and physical safety is not compromised.

Bottom line, there are quite a lot of legalities and verifications involved, not to mention the amount of time these details will require. However, when you choose a licensed home care agency, much of the burden will be lifted, so you can have peace of mind your elderly loved one is in good hands, allowing you to continue with your daily life.

#1 Background Checks:

All verifications regarding licensing, qualifications, certifications, references, and criminal background checks are performed by the agency. Also, once the agency understands the type of care your elderly loved one needs, you’ll have the opportunity to interview candidates beforehand to ensure personalities mesh and expectations are satisfied.

#2 Customer Satisfaction:

Agencies routinely monitor staff performance and hold caregivers to high-quality standards because they are a direct reflection of the company’s reputation and dedication to providing exceptional services.

#3 Taxes and Payroll:

A licensed agency is well-equipped to perform all employer-employee related tasks including paying staff, providing vacation benefits, and also paying and reporting taxes. Likewise, should your caregiver require a sick day, an agency will be able to provide another person to care for your loved one.

#4 Insured and Bonded:

Licensed home care agencies protect you from any liability issues. They are fully bonded and have insurance coverage in place should a caregiver sustain injury in your home.

Agencies are in the business of providing in-home care services and as such, offer a wide range of certified staff members that can include special training and services necessary for providing various levels of care to individuals in the comforts of home.