Can I Be Paid as an IHSS Caregiver for My Child with Special Needs?
It is common to struggle financially if you are a parent of a child who has special needs. There are health services to pay for, as well as therapies that are necessary for your child to lead a fulfilling life. In many situations, it is difficult to work at a fulltime job because you must take your child to regular doctor appointments and monitor your child at all times in order for her to remain safely at home. But can you get paid as an IHSS caregiver for your child with special needs?
The short answer is yes. You may be eligible to receive benefits such as In-Home Supportive Services (IHSS) in the state of California. This funding can be used to meet your child’s daily needs and can help pay the expenses associated with the disability.
IHSS Caregiver Funding
IHSS is a California government program that provides financial support for in-home caretakers of impaired elders, persons with disabilities, and children with developmental disabilities including autism. While a variety of benefits are available, the most important for families of children with special needs is “Protective Supervision.” When you are approved for Protective Supervision, you will receive an hourly wage to stay home and care for your child as an IHSS provider. This wage is exempt from federal income taxes.
Few things can make such a big difference in the lives of a family as the ability to give your special needs child the full care he or she deserves, without endangering your family finances. If your child has been diagnosed with autism or another development disability, you may be eligible for Protective Supervision.
Unfortunately, applying for and receiving these benefits are notoriously difficult and many families give up after encountering road block after road block. The application process can be confusing, and you need to adequately prepare all the necessary documentation to become an IHSS provider.
How to Apply to Be a Paid IHSS Caregiver
The IHSS application process generally involves a written application, an in-home interview with a social worker, and medical records. Once approved as an IHSS provider, there will be ongoing assessments. You can get assistance at every stage of this process whether you are a first-time applicant, or your application has been denied.
First time applicants can get help to:
- Determine if you are eligible
- Create a plan with you to maximize your benefits
- Perform all necessary research and complete all paperwork
- Obtain any required medical records
- Assist you through the interview and all processing
If you applied for IHSS benefits and were rejected, you can get help to:
- Review your case
- Check all records and research the reason for your rejection
- Assist you in appealing your application
- Represent you at hearings
How Much Can You Get Paid as an IHSS Caregiver in California?
In California, legislation has been implemented to increase the wages of paid IHSS caregivers. Specifically, recent state minimum wage increases approved in 2017 and 2018 established both temporary and permanent changes to how counties can increase paid IHSS caregiver wages and benefits with varying effects on state and county costs.
On January 1, 2020, the minimum wage increased to $13 per hour.
On January 1, 2021, the minimum wage will increase to $14 per hour.
On January 1, 2022, the minimum wage will increase to $15 per hour.
Currently, as an IHSS Protective Supervision provider, the maximum number of hours you can claim is 283 per month. That equates to a maximum of $3,396 per month in financial benefits you can receive as a paid IHSS caregiver.
Every child with special needs deserves full supervised care, and no family should be turned away. If you feel overwhelmed and you need help, please contact us.
American Disability Association is dedicated to the wellbeing and protection of children with disabilities and actively provides support to enhance their quality of life. Whether you are dealing with federal or state benefits or struggling with a school district to get proper education for your child, we have the resources to help you. Many individuals and families managing a disability are not aware of the wide array of services available to them, or they do not know how to apply for these benefits in a way that is likely to succeed.
Contact us for help. Dial (877) 283-4807 or email us at [email protected]