The responsibility of caring for an aging parent often falls on a child or close relative. Often, the sibling that doesn’t work full time or is the most financially stable gets tasked with taking on the role of primary caretaker. While this role can be rewarding, it also comes with a lot of responsibility. That’s why it’s so important to figure out a plan ahead of time, and lay out how other family members can contribute, regardless of where they live. Here are some tips for dividing the responsibilities.
Assess Your Skills
When dividing the responsibilities of taking care of an elderly parent, it’s crucial to start with a discussion about how everyone can best contribute. Think about each family member’s strengths and weaknesses. Have a conversation about all aspects of caregiving, from managing your aging parent’s finances to helping with doctor appointments or shopping needs. This type of preplanning can help you and your siblings reach a compromise that is acceptable to everyone involved.
Divide The Responsibilities Equally
In many cases, one child takes on the primary role of caregiver; that role is often filled by the family member that lives the closest or has fewer work obligations. But those elements don’t mean relatives who are pressed for time or who live far away can’t contribute equally. Long-distance caregivers can provide valuable support when it comes to things like managing finances, booking appointments, arranging services, gathering information about health services and medications or pitching in financially. Online shopping is another way busy siblings or those living further away can help both monetarily and physically.
Providing emotional support for both the caregiver and aging family member is another way siblings can contribute. A simple phone call can make a big difference to someone who needs extra support.
Get Professional Advice
It can be worthwhile for families to seek professional advice on how to best take care of an aging parent. There are a number of services that make caregiving less stressful; this includes outside caregiving assistance or consulting a professional fiduciary about the best methods to manage your parent’s finances now and in the future.
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As the most experienced CPA in the Inland Empire who specializes in working with seniors, Marcia L. Campbell is committed to helping each client thrive by caring for their personal and financial wellbeing with genuine interest, well-established expertise, and a focus on respectful partnerships. Marcia’s team specializes in a number of services including elder & financial care, court & trust accountings as well as private fiduciary and tax services. At Marcia L. Campbell, CPA, we understand the importance of our clients’ individual needs and are committed to helping them make the best personal and financial decisions for their future.