Getting Paid as a Family Caregiver: 3 Government Benefits Programs

getting paid as a family caregiver

Benefits programs pay families to care for seniors

Caring for an older adult is expensive. There are out-of-pocket costs for medical supplies, prescription drug co-pays, home modifications, home care help, and more. 

In addition, many people have had to leave their jobs or cut back on hours in order to care for their older adult.

Any extra money could help ease the financial pressure, so family caregivers often ask “Can I get paid for caregiving?”

The good news is that getting paid as a family caregiver is possible – these government benefits programs do exist.

The not-so-good news is that these programs aren’t available everywhere and not everyone will qualify. But it’s still worthwhile to check in case you can get the benefits.

We found 3 government programs that pay family members (and sometimes spouses) for caring for an older adult. We explain how they work and where to apply.



3 ways of getting paid as a family caregiver

1. Medicaid programs

Most states have Medicaid programs that give money to seniors so they can hire an in-home caregiver.

That person could be a family member or friend instead of a professional caregiver. Some states also allow a spouse to be the paid caregiver.

Each state has its own eligibility requirements and name for its program. If your older adult is accepted into the state’s program, the amount of money they receive will depend on a Medicaid assessment of need and the average state wage for in-home care aides.

To find the local Medicaid office and learn how to apply for the program, it’s best to start with the local Area Agency on Aging. Ask them how to contact the local Medicaid office or how to apply for a program that would pay you for caring for your older adult.


2. Special state programs
Some states may have similar programs that pay family caregivers, but for people who are not eligible for Medicaid or who have specific conditions like traumatic brain injury.

To find out if there are any special programs that your older adult may qualify for, contact your local Medicaid office or the state department of health.

To find the correct government office, it might be easiest to start with the local Area Agency on Aging and ask them to direct you.


3. Veterans benefits programs
Veteran-Directed Home and Community-Based Services (VD-HCBS)
This home-based care program helps veterans of any age who are at risk of institutional placement to continue to live in their own homes.

A veteran can choose the services that best meet their needs and manage their own spending budgets for personal care services. Hiring their own in-home care aides falls into that area – including family and friends.

Aid & Attendance or Housebound programs
Veterans who are eligible for a VA pension and need in-home care or are housebound may be able to get additional benefits payments on top of their monthly pension.

Note: Veterans cannot receive both of these benefits at the same time.

To find out how to apply for veterans benefits programs, contact the local VA regional benefits office.


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By DailyCaring Editorial Team
Image: Generations Home Care


This article wasn’t sponsored and doesn’t contain affiliate links. For more information, see How We Make Money.


  • Reply October 29, 2019


    I’m tryna get some information how can I get paid for watching my 85 year old uncle.

    • Reply October 30, 2019


      We hope the information and links in the above article can help you find programs in your area that pay family caregivers.

  • Reply October 17, 2019

    Doris Cunningham

    I am a caregiver for my son 24/7. He is 44 and living with Myotonia M. D. He is barely ambulatory and dysarthric, also suffers from heart issues and incontinence etc.. He is truly a joy. I am honored to care for him. My husband is deceased. I can not leave home for work and am looking for financial help. Do you know of any programs we could apply for? Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.

  • Reply September 7, 2019

    anita ornelas

    i live with my aunt here in california and take of her she is 92 years of age how can i get paid for taking care of her so i dont have to look for a job can you help

    • Reply September 7, 2019


      Every program has different requirements, so it’s best to contact the programs listed in the above article to find out if you’re eligible to get paid for caring for your aunt.

      To help with money overall, your aunt may be eligible for government assistance programs that help pay for caregiving and household expenses. More info here — Benefits Programs Help Pay for Caregiving Expenses

  • Reply February 4, 2019

    Joan Lancaster

    I have a friend whose son, age 44, is totally disabled. He has muscular dystrophy. She takes care of him 24/7.
    He gets a small Social Security check and Medicaid. Is there a government program that will pay her for taking care of him?

    • Reply February 9, 2019


      Every program has different requirements, so it’s best to contact the programs listed in the above article to find out more.

      She may also be eligible for government assistance programs that help pay for caregiving costs. More info here — Benefits Programs Help Pay for Caregiving Expenses

    • Reply August 14, 2019

      Shawn H

      Not sure if this helps anyone but I get paid to take care of my mom through a Medicaid funded program called cdpap (consumer directed personal assistance program) the company I work for is called freedomcare they are one of the bigger cdpap companies around so they may have a branch in your state if not just Google your state and the word cdpap and if theres a similar program it may pop up

      • Reply August 15, 2019


        Thanks for sharing! So glad you’re able to get paid to care for your mom.

        CDPAP is the name of the Medicaid program in New York state. Programs in other states will mostly likely have different names.

  • Reply January 7, 2019

    Jackie Collins

    I’m 50 yrs old & recently had cervical spine surgery that has left me temporarily/maybe permanently in a wheelchair. My 18 yr old daughter is my caregiver. Is there any way she can get paid to take care of me since we currently have no income?

    • Reply January 7, 2019


      I’m so sorry to hear about your health and financial situation and wish you all the best in your recovery. The best thing to do would be to use the resources in this article above to contact your state or county agencies to see if you’re eligible for their programs. Another thing to check is benefits programs to see if they can help with expenses — more info: Benefits Programs Help Pay for Caregiving Expenses at

  • Reply July 25, 2018

    Diana Distefano

    I live with my 87 year old mom and she needs to have doctors visits therapy and I take her but I work all day but I don’t make enough money to pay bills when I take her to her visits is there anyway I can get financial help to pay my bills while I care for her ? Thanks

  • Reply March 12, 2018

    Edward Villa

    Our shower floor is cracking in several places I’m 80 years old and need assistants we live on Social Security need financial assistants for repairs
    Thank you

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