Ask The Expert: If my father lives with me and I provide full care, can I charge him the average cost of a nursing home in my area? If I end up putting dad into a nursing home at some point, would the money that I collected be exempt from medicaid?

posted by: Ben A. Neiburger Elder Law Attorney

The answers to your question depend on state law. Accordingly, the information I am going to give you may not apply to you. This means you should see an elder law attorney before any money changes hands and not act on what I say until then.

With that being said, there are some states that permit children to enter into a written contractual arrangement with their parents to provide certain services (including those you propose). If the children keep a time sheet that describes what they did in providing services and when and the children are paid fair market value for their services based on those time sheets, some state will not count that compensation against the parent's Mediciad eligiblity. If you enter into this contract, it should be signed before any money or services exchange hands. I recommend hiring an elder law attorney to draft the contract (if it is drafted incorrectly, then it wont work and you will only discover this when it is too late). In addition, I would hire a geriatric care manager to look at what you are doing for your father and write a letter to you that supports the value of your services. If you end up putting dad in the nursing home, a properly administered personal care contract can protect the monies paid to you for services. You should be aware that this would be taxable income to you.

With respect to tenant income and avoid FICA contributions, check with your accountant on that.

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Posted by:Hello.

3/20/2013 11:06:01 AM

You're an asshole. Why don't you then use the money to pay him back for raising you?

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4/17/2012 1:37:57 PM

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Posted by:Sachiko

4/13/2012 11:45:06 PM

I have a daughter who helps take care of a eerldly gentleman, part time, confined to a bed because of illness. He lives at his own home and wants it that way. He fears that he will die if he goes into a nursing home. I have to agree with him. I plan to stay at home right to the very end. No Nursing home for me. I personally have seen people in nursing homes. Its degrading.Roy, Maine, 57

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