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Stop! Don't sign that contract.

# 12 Does my mom or dad have to sign a contract if we hire an agency for  care giving ?

Here is my advice on this question, for what it is worth.  NEVER sign a contract for a care giving agency.  How do you know it is a contract?  After all if an agency is licensed by the state of Georgia, then we know there will be paperwork to sign.  Well the major difference is the "get out of jail free clause"- or at least that is what I call it.  Many agencies, like Synergy HomeCare have clients sign a Service Agreement.  This is just a pledge really of what service they intend to provide as long as you as the client provides the agreed upon payment. The service agreement should have a paragraph that states that a client will never have to pay a cancellation fee. This means that if you want to end service or need to end service then all you have to do is call and cancel. Admittedly, most people stick with the service once they see how helpful it is to have that extra pair of hands, but sometimes things happen that we can't foresee.  Usually this comes in the form of a parent ending up in the hospital or a long term care facility unexpectedly.  

So basically this boils down to this:  read the service agreement and when in doubt, ask the case manager or account manager to help you understand any language that seems confusing to you.      

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