Is support available for expats caring for family members in France

Is support available for expats caring for family members in France

Is support available for expats caring for family members in France

One dilemma which can cause consternation amongst family members who’ve emigrated to France is that of caring for an elderly parent or relative who’s no longer able to manage on his or her own.

Emigrating for whatever reason often means leaving older relatives who’re able to take care of themselves for the foreseeable future, but sudden health issues may well curtail their ability to cope. Many British expats living in France when met with these circumstances have had no option but to volunteer as carers, but don’t know if their chosen country of residence has any support for the extra costs involved and any home improvements which need to be made.

The French take supporting their parents and grandparents very seriously – perhaps due to a French law which forces children to support their elderly relatives where finances permit. For expats, certain aspects of caring for the elderly are supported, if only by tax credits rather than direct financial assistance. For example, should improvements need to be made to aid mobility, installation of specially designed equipment qualifies for a tax credit as long as the work is done by a professional.

Normally, around 25 per cent of the full cost is reimbursed via your tax bill, and costs are capped at either €5,000 for a one-person household and €10,000 for couples. If a home help is necessary due to your work commitments, a home visit to assess the needs of your dependent family member can be arranged, with a doctor and social worker tasked with establishing actual needs as well as your own involvement in his or her everyday life.

If it’s decided that you can cope, you may receive remuneration or you may be able to receive external home help when needed. Obviously, the amount of help, financial or practical, that you will receive depends on how much help your family member needs and his or her own financial situation.

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