Medicaid May Pay a Family Member as a Caregiver

March 25, 2020

Taking care of an elderly relative is hard work and time-consuming, but it can be profitable work. As a caregiver you will spend countless hours assisting loved ones with daily tasks such as cooking and cleaning, errands, driving them to appointments and keeping them safe. Medicaid does allow certain family members to serve as a compensated caregiver.

Maryland's Community Personal Assistance Services (CPAS) are part of the state Medicaid plan and are provided in the eligible individual's home or community residence by self-employed or agency-employed providers. Under this program, ‘self-employed' means program participants choose their own care providers. This “self-directed” program is also known as “consumer-directed” or “participant-directed”. A senior accepted into this program will be given a monthly budget for purchasing Activities for Daily Living (ADL) assistance, and with the appropriate waiver, the cash from this budget may be used to hire a family member as a Personal Care Attendant, commonly known as a caregiver.

In Maryland, the caregiver cannot be your spouse or someone living with you and the pay rate must be less than fair market value to avoid fraud. In addition to Medicaid programs, there are also non-Medicaid programs that allow for self-directed care. These programs may have different eligibility requirements than Medicaid.

The first step is to apply for Medicaid through a home-based Medicaid program. Medicaid is available only to low-income seniors. The Medicaid application approval process may take several months. There also may be a waiting list to receive benefits under the program. For more information on eligibility requirements, contact Stouffer Legal at 443-470-3599 in the Greater Baltimore area.

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