Q. Who is Affinity Home Care?
A. Affinity Home Care is a boutique full service premier domestic placement agency helping families find professional caregivers who can help them in managing their personal or professional lives while there is a need to take care of their loved ones. To learn more about our company, please see About Us page.
Q. Do you offer a trial period?
A. No, we do not offer a specific trial period besides 30 days since initial placement and replacements after.
Q. Which areas do you service?
A. We service states of California, Wisconsin, Indiana and Illinois (Lake, Cook, Will, Du Page, McHenry, Kendall and Kane counties in Illinois).
Q. How do I start with you?
A. Please fill out the Job Order online first and we will contact you as soon as we can. Please NOTE that an agency-client relationship is not established until you have accepted and signed an engagement agreement with our office.
Q. Do you select the candidates for us?
A. We are a placement agency. We do not select the candidates for you; however, our work is to screen applicants and refer the most qualified applicants based on your requirements. The final pick is still up to the employer. But rest assured, we only refer candidates that we believe are well suited for your needs and requirements.
Q: How long does it take to find a caregiver?
A: The entire process might take as little as 2-3 days to 2-3 weeks and up to 6 weeks at the most. We suggest that you start your search as soon as you know that you will need a service provider. Mostly it will depend on your ability to hold interviews. If you respond to us quickly then everything will run smoothly.
Q: What is the fee I pay the caregiver for 24 hour live-in care?
A. The fee is $150 - $170 per day and is based on a one-patient home. If the caregiver is required to be up frequently at night (more than twice), a different fee may apply.
The fee for 2 people in the home is $175-$195 per day.
Hospice rates are $17515- per day due to the type of the care.
Q: What is the fee I pay the caregiver for hourly come & go care?
A. Hourly rates are $15-$18 per hour for a full time care and $20+ for anything less than 35 hours a week.
Q. Would you offer a temporary candidate while we search for the right fit employee?
A. Yes, we are able to help you with temporary placement while you in a search for a right fit person at the Short-Term Services Referral rates with 20 hr minimum/week.
Q. How do we get a replacement for the caregiver's day off?
A. Most of the time the placed caregiver can get a fill-in person or Affinity Home Care might be able to arrange that. We cannot guarantee a fill-in at all times, especially during the holidays. In order for us to have a background check on fill-in caregivers, they are required to be registered with us.
Q. What happens if patient is admitted into the hospital or the rehab facility?
A. In such cases family can choose one of following options:
Q. What happens if the person you referred left me or I terminate the employment?
A. We offer every employer a 1 year guarantee with paid Annual Registration Fee. This means that depending on your chosen replacement plan, if for any reason, except "at your fault" employment is terminated, Affinity Home Care will find replacement at no additional cost (FREE).
Q: Do you as an agency take care of liability issues associated with us employing a caregiver?
A. No, if you choose to work with us as a placement agency, you are responsible for all liability associated with your caregiver's employment. If you would like to learn more about our full services agency services, please call us.
Q. Is the family required to sign a contract for care?
A. The State of Illinois requires that all families and their caregivers sign a contract which describes the duties the caregiver as well as that client is caregiver's employer.
Q. Can I just call my caregiver an independent contractor and let him/her pay the taxes?
A. The simple answer is no. The IRS defines household employees as “nannies, housekeepers, maids, cooks, elder care givers, household managers, and others, employed in domestic service in a private residence”. The IRS is very clear that these workers are your employees, not independent contractors, and that the household employer, are ultimately responsible for the reporting and remittance of any household employment taxes that may be due.
A nanny, housekeeper, or home health aide that you hire directly is your employee under common law. It does not matter how many hours they work, whether the position is permanent or temporary, or how much you pay the worker.
Your nanny must be provided a Form W-2 every year for wage and tax reporting, and you must make payments to the Internal Revenue Service for Social Security and Medicare taxes, as well as the Federal Unemployment Tax (FUTA). It is improper to issue a Form 1099 to a nanny who earned $1800 ( starting 2012) in a year.
Under common law, a worker who performs services for you is your employee if you can control what will be done and how it will be done. It does not matter whether you give your nanny great latitude, but rather that you have the right to control the work. It does not matter if the work is performed on a full time or part time basis. It does not matter whether the worker lives with you or not. It does not matter if he/she is paid hourly, daily or a salary. It does not matter how the employee refers to herself or how you refer to him/her in an employment contract. The household worker is your employee and you are generally obligated for all payroll tax filings and remittances.
The IRS articulates strict guidelines that differentiate employees and independent contractors to further eliminate confusion. Nannies and other domestics are generally considered employees (Refer to IRS Publication 926: Household Employers Tax Guide (for wages paid in 2012).
Q. Who qualifies to work as Independent Contractor?
A. To qualify as an independent contractor, the worker must show factors that indicate true independence, such as being able to determine when (days or time) they will work, where work is performed, work for other employers, and provide their own equipment. An example of a household independent contractor is a gardener who comes to the home as needed or on a flexible schedule. In a nanny situation, the family is typically driving all of the above, not the nanny, so the nanny cannot be paid under an independent contractor classification.
Q: Where can we get help with taxes for my household employees?
A: We suggest that you discuss that with your accountant. We partnered with an excellent tax service company to which we can refer you to.
Q: Am I required to pay for mileage if my employee is using their car for work?
A: Yes, you should always consider reimbursing your employee, even if they drive only 1 mile or 5 miles. It adds up! Your employee will appreciate your kind gesture as the gas prices are high. As of July 2011 the rate is 55.5 cents per mile. Your employee, as a taxpayer, always has the option of calculating the actual costs of using their vehicle rather than using the standard mileage rates. The suggested rate which most of the companies use to reimburse their employees is $1.50/mile for the new employee and can be raised after couple months. You should both consider discussing this matter in an honest manner.
For more information on reimbursement please visit Standard Mileage Rates at IRS official website.
Q: What happens when I go on vacation or leave the town for any reason? Do I give our employee the UNPAID time off?
A: You are strongly encouraged to pay your employee. Your employee relies on his/her paychecks and to be without it for even 1 week could cause a financial difficulty for them.
Q. What compensation package do I offer for an employee?
A. An employee compensation package today is not limited to her salary, it also may include:
A. Benefits may be offered optionally to all domestic personnel types and when they are offered, they make the package being offered to a candidate more attractive and may contribute to the longevity of their employment.
Q. Am I required to pay/reimburse for the employee tuition?
A. Most likely. Most employers/companies have tuition reimbursement benefits and/or professional development funds to help employees keep their skills current.
Q. How do you select your candidates?
A. Affinity Home Care follows a very strict screening process in order to provide employers with only the highest caliber service providers. We begin with conducting an interview with possible service providers over the phone, via Skype or personally (if possible). Then we verify and authenticate the identity of every potential service provider before we evaluate them by checking their education/training history, work history, personal and employment references and criminal background checks. We run background check and upon your request we submit candidate to pre-employment assessment test after you verbally offer a job to our Candidate. We ensure that they are verified by the Social Security and are not listed in National and State Sex Offender Registry files.
Q. Will I be able to speak with the candidate before I hire them?
A. Yes. We facilitate discussions between the employer and the candidate upon the employer’s request. We will help both parties understand the terms of the employment including compensation, work schedule, vacations, duties, benefits and other matters concerning the welfare of both parties.
Q. What type of background checks do you do?
A. Background check includes SSN verification, Sex Offender Registry Search (National and State), County Criminal Records ( all counties developed by the Social Security Trace within the past 7 years) search and upon your request and paid fee: pre-employment assessment that examines a job’s candidate’s suitability for the position. Driving record check is done if driving is required for the position.
Q. Do you offer a periodic updates of background screenings?
A. Yes, we do offer periodic updating of background screenings for all long term and temporary services candidates for an additional fee of $125.00/each.
Q. Can a background check in California include employee's credit report?
A. Effective January 1, 2012, a California employer cannot review their employee's credit report unless the job falls into one of numerous exceptions.
Jobs that allow a credit check include:
A position in the state Department of Justice
A managerial position
A position as a sworn peace officer or other law enforcement job
A position for which the information is required by law
A position that involves access to specified personal information
A position in which the person is a named signatory on the employer's bank or credit card account
A position that involves access to confidential or proprietary information
A position that involves regular access to $10,000 or more of cash
If you order employee's credit report you must give them notice that a credit report will be ordered along with an explanation of what exemption allows this access.
The full text of this bill, AB 22, can be found at: http://leginfo.ca.gov/pub/ 11-12/bill/asm/ab_0001-0050/ ab_22_bill_20110920_enrolled.ht ml
With this change, California now joins six other states that restrict the use of credit history for employment purposes. Those states are: Hawaii, Oregon, Washington, Illinois, Connecticut and Maryland.
Q. How much shall I pay Affinity Home Care for the long term/permanent services referral assistance?
A. Clients shall pay Affinity Home Care a non-refundable registration fee of $50. The fee is applied towards the placement fee if you choose our candidate. This fee covers our administrative fees such as the search for the service provider, coordinating interview process, consultation, registration of a long term services placement. However, please note that acceptance of this fee does not guarantee referral of the service provider and client satisfaction.
The fee also covers finding a replacement for the caregiver if necessary to provide a continuum of care.
LONG TERM/PERMANENT SERVICES AGENCY REFERRAL FEES ARE AS FOLLOWS
FEE: $475. Fee is paid upon placement. We also require that upon placement client covers caregiver's portion of the placement fee in the amount of 2 weeks salary (caregivers are aware that they will not be receiving payment from you for 2 weeks after the placement as they will be reimbursing you for paid portion of their placement fee on their behalf upon placement).
Long-Term/Permanent placement is considered a placement for 2 months and more
Covers Elder Care Provider, Companion
SHORT TERM/TEMPORARY SERVICES AGENCY REFERRAL FEES
To be paid directly to Affinity Home Care
FEE: please call us for more information about the fees for short term services lasting up to 8 weeks. Fees are paid at the end of the services. We also require that upon placement client covers caregiver's portion of the placement fee in the amount of 10% of salary (caregivers are aware that they will not be receiving payment in that amount from you after the placement as they will be reimbursing you for paid portion of their placement fee on their behalf upon placement).
Short-Term/Temporary placements are considered consecutive placements up to 8 weeks AND for random placements up to 1 year. Placements are not guaranteed every time.
Q. What are the fees I pay to the caregiver?
A. TAKING CARE OF 1 ADULT:
Caregivers who work as live-ins taking care of 1 adult but typically don't drive receive $150 a day; Caregivers who drive and take care of 1 adult typically get $160;
TAKING CARE OF 2 ADULTS (husband and wife, but usually one person needs the care):
Caregivers who don't drive and take care of a husband and wife (couple) in the household typically receive $175/day; Caregivers who drive receive $195;
TAKING CARE OF PATIENT UNDER HOSPICE CARE:
Daily fee is $175
Caregivers receive $15-$18/hr at the minimum with 4 hour minimum
Q. What type of payments do you accept?
A. We accept cash, checks and direct deposit.
Q. How can I pay for your services?
A. You may pay for our services in person, by mail or by secure invitation online.
Q. Where can I find your Long-Term or Short-Term/Temporary Services Referral Agreements?
A. We will email you agreements when you call us to request placement services.
Q. How do I sign the agreement with you?
A. We will send you an invitation to sign it electronically. You will have to enter your name, e-mail and create a password in order to enter the signing room.
Q. If I am not satisfied with the service provider, will you refund my money?
A. No refund is offered on a long term placement. For short term placements lasting up to 8 weeks we collect the fee at the end of the services.
Q. If I would like my candidate to take an additional pre-employment assessment tests, how do I order them and how do I pay for them?
A. If you would like to order an additional test, you may call us or e-mail us providing us the name of the test and the full name and e-mail of the candidate. You may pay for the test by mailing us a check or paying for them online. After the payment is approved, the candidate will be able to take a test. We do offer volume discounts.
Q. What if I want to hire someone from another state?
A. As an employer, you are responsible for paying for the service provider’s transportation costs. We highly recommend that you first speak with the service provider regarding additional fees that you may need to shoulder.
Q. Can I get information about Home Security System Installation?
A. Yes , we do have a partner who is a leading company in Home Security Systems. Please see the Resources page for the discount information.
Q. Can I get information about Home Health Security Services?
A. Yes, please give us a call.
Q. What types of training do you require for your candidates? What types of training do you offer to your candidates?
A. Service providers must have adequate training on the job they are applying for.
Q. What types of additional pre-employment assessments do you offer?
A. We offer the following:
1) Values Test. Fee: $35.00/candidate
2) Typing Test. Fee: $30.00/candidate
3) Office Skills Test. Fee: $25.00/candidate
4) Personality Trait Test. Designed to identify an individual’s strengths and weaknesses. Basic Level. Fee: $30.00/candidate
5) Key Personality Trait Test. Designed to identify an individual’s strengths, weaknesses and areas of competence. Comprehensive Level. Fee: $85.00/candidate
6) Performance Review Test. Fee: $55.00/candidate
7) Skills Test. Designed to help determine a job candidate's ability to perform tasks such as problem solving, reasoning, analysis, and communicating. Fee: $55.00/candidate
8) Time Management. Fee: $45.00/candidate
9) Emotional Intelligence. Fee: $85.00/candidate
10) Cognitive Skills. Fee: $55.00/candidate
Q. How can I contact you?
A. You may give us a call @ (847) 745-9412 or just fill out this form and we will contact you as soon as possible.