At Aidaly, we understand that family caregivers often perform this vital work without the expectation of wages or even recognition; however, it's essential to know that state and federal programs are in place that can offer you financial assistance. Caregiving can take a financial and emotional toll on family members, and we’re passionate about helping caregivers understand the assistance available to them.
Keep reading to discover what you may qualify for in Louisiana.
Most people are taxpayers, so the government often gives financial assistance by helping out with taxes. Unless you know what you're entitled to, or work with someone who does, you may miss out.
There are tax benefits that can save you money if you're a caregiver in Louisiana. Find out more about each one below.
The Child Tax Credit and the Tax Credit for Other Dependents
People who claim their children or other dependents on their federal tax return can receive up to $2,000 for each qualified dependent. These credits are fully refundable, which means you can get the money even if you owe no taxes. To receive a credit, you must meet certain income requirements. To learn more and discover if you’re eligible for a tax credit, you can find more information here.
The Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit and School Readiness Credits
If you paid someone to care for your loved one while at work or looking for work, you could get money back even if you owed no taxes. Up to $8,000 of what you paid for daycare, day camps, babysitting, adult day programs, or caregiving while you were working or looking for work can be claimed on your federal tax return. To assess your eligibility, click here. Louisiana also offers several credits for caregivers of children and other dependents that you can learn about here.
Tax Deductions for Medical and Dental Expenses
If you spent more than 7.5% of your adjusted gross income (AGI) on medical or dental expenses that weren't paid back by your insurance, you can deduct that money from your taxable income and owe less on your taxes. You can count any money you spend on eligible expenses for yourself, your spouse, and your dependents so your total can add up quickly. You can read more here to see if your expenses meet the requirements.
Medicaid and Other State Programs in Louisiana
Around 1,680,000 Louisianians are enrolled in Medicaid: that’s 36% of the entire state population. Enrolling in Medicaid can be a great option for receiving financial assistance for those who meet Medicaid income and health criteria.
Medicaid Waivers allow Medicaid recipients to direct their funding directly to caregivers rather than to Medicaid-approved agencies. In Louisiana, patients can access the Louisiana Community Choices Waiver. Those eligible for this program can pay for care that takes place within the patient’s home in order to avoid nursing home placement. You can learn more about these programs here.
Long-Term Care Insurance
If you don’t qualify for Medicaid, or already have private insurance, remember that some insurance policies classified as “long-term care” may allow patients to pay a family member to provide their care. Not all long-term care insurance providers offer this option, so insurance providers should be contacted directly to determine if your loved one’s plan offers this.
Veterans Benefits in Louisiana
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) provides financial assistance for eligible Veterans. These programs focus on preserving Veterans’ independence and often allow Veterans to distribute funding according to their own discretion. Although the VA is federal, some resources can differ from state to state. Learn more about Louisiana’s state benefits for Veterans here; read on for more information about federal benefits.
Program of Comprehensive Assistance for Family Caregivers (PCAFC)
With the Program of Comprehensive Assistance for Family Caregivers, you can earn a monthly stipend of up to $2,750 per month as a family caregiver to a Veteran who has a service-related disability or illness. In addition, you can access training and counseling programs to support your caregiving services. Check to see if you’re eligible here.
The Veteran-Directed Care Program (VDC)
Those Veterans with health needs requiring ongoing, daily care can employ family members via the VDC program. Generally, a person employed under this program could earn between $8 and $21 per hour. Veterans in Louisiana who are eligible for community care and meet the service's clinical criteria also qualify for this service. You can learn more about the VDC here.
Veteran Aid and Attendance Benefit (VAA)
The VAA benefit aims to improve the quality of life of participating Veterans. Unlike most assistance programs, this benefit, and other VA Pension benefits, can be spent as cash by the Veteran, who can determine what services are most necessary to them. This freedom allows Veterans to use the funding for in-home care services, which family members can provide. Find out more about Veteran pension benefits here.
Joining Aidaly will connect you with a supportive community of fellow caregivers and help you access to the benefits you’re entitled to. We understand the impact caregiving can have on family members, which is why we’re passionate about providing resources and training to those who need it most.