Companionship Exemption Law Ends Effective Jan. 1, 2015
Reversing a decades-long interpretation, the Department of Labor has amended its regulations governing the employment of live-in domestic service workers. “Under the revised regulations, effective January 1, 2015, third party employers, such as home care agencies, may not claim the overtime exemption for live-in domestic service workers, and must pay such workers at least the federal minimum wage for all hours worked and overtime pay at one and a half times the regular rate of pay for all hours worked over 40 in a workweek, even if the worker is jointly employed by the household.” For additional details, see Fact Sheet #79B: Live-in Domestic Service Workers under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).
As a result of this new legislation, DTN Home Care has had to increase the rate for live-in care by 20 percent in most cases. Therefore, effective Jan. 1, 2015, live-in care services provided by DTN Home Care will cost $300 per day. This rate is based on a 16 hour work day with the caregiver sleeping 8 hours per night (at least 5 hours uninterrupted). If the caregiver is awakened to assist during the night, there is an additional charge of $25 per hour.
Although this is a significant price increase, a live-in caregiver remains an affordable alternative to nursing home placement that allows patients to stay in their own homes. The daily rates for nursing homes in Bismarck range from $173.74 – $603.68. For a list of ND nursing facility 2014 rates, click on http://www.nd.gov/dhs/services/medicalserv/medicaid/docs/nf-rates.pdf.
Advantages of Live-in Care
Live-in care ensures a qualified caregiver is available to you or your loved one as needed, but it can be much more than that. DTN Home Care clients can expect not only an employee, but also a companion and a friend. As someone who cares for you or your loved one for the majority of each day, the live-in caregiver becomes a part of the family. They get involved in daily activities such as cooking, cleaning and other housekeeping tasks, as well as hobbies and recreational activities. The more the caregiver is included in family activities, the more comfortable the arrangements will be for everyone involved.
Our caregivers receive training and written guidelines to ensure that they don’t over-step established professional guidelines. Caregivers treat patients with respect for their individual needs and values, and promote patient autonomy and self-determination.
All of our live-in care providers must meet quality and safety standards and regulations. Clients and patients are always protected by the law. They are all highly qualified and trained, so you can expect the necessary level of care. Continuous reassessment of needs and requirements is performed by the DTN Home Care nursing staff to ensure that care is most effective and appropriate, as changing circumstances require, and as the caregiver and the client get to know each other. At all times the client and patient can expect to be treated with respect by the caregiver, regardless of their sex, cultural background and language, age, beliefs and disability.
To learn more about live-in care provided through DTN Home Care or how the DOL changes may affect you and the care you are already receiving, contact us today at 701.663.5373.