Sometimes, people close to us need help because of age, illness or a disability. When this happens, we become caregivers.
Stepping into this role raises lots of questions. Can we take time off work to care for someone? Do we have a role when it comes to health care decisions? Can we act on behalf of the other person?
The law has tools to help caregivers understand their roles, make decisions and accompany others.
Éducaloi has put together a toolkit of key legal information for caregivers.
Balancing Work and Caregiving
Can I take time off work for caregiving? If so, how much? What if my employer objects? If my employer wants to let me go?
Health Care Decisions
The general rule is that people have the right to make their own health care decisions. Doctors must give certain information so patients can make these decisions. But what about people who can’t make decisions? And can treatment ever be imposed?
How is confidential medical information protected? What’s in a medical record? And who can see a patient’s medical record?
Navigating the Health and Social Services Network
Caregivers face a network that can be hard navigate: the health and social services system. These articles can point you in the right direction.
Plan Ahead for Peace of Mind
There a many legal tools to plan for the unexpected. And others that let caregivers make decisions on behalf of someone else.
Legal Protections for Vulnerable People
What happens when people can’t care for themselves or their affairs? If they don’t have a legal document for this kind of situation (a protection mandate), the law has several solutions.
For more information about issues of concern to seniors, see Éducaloi’s special seniors guide.
Sometimes, people have to move for health reasons. People leaving rental housing can end their leases in some cases, and the law has protections if there are problems. Éducaloi also has a special article housing issues for seniors.
Helpful Print Guides and Pamphlets (PDF)
- Dealing With a Death and Settling Estate
- Wills Common Questions (pamphlet)
- Complaints About Health and Social Services (pamphlet)
- Housing Issues for Seniors
- Protection Mandates
- Medical Decisions
- Seniors: Discrimination, Abuse and Financial Fraud
- Planning for the Future (pamphlet)
- Powers of Attorney and Protection Mandates (pamphlet)
- Powers of Attorney (Guide)
- Advance Medical Directives (pamphlet)
- Organ Donation (pamphlet)
- Estate Executors (pamphlet)
- Health and Social Services in English (pamphlet)
Accompaniment and Referrals
- Member-groups of the Community Health and Social Services Network can help English-speaking caregivers find support and services.
- L'Appui pour les proches aidants d'aînés is a provincial organization for caregivers for seniors. Its Caregiver Helpline (1-855-852-7784) offers support and referrals.
Information on Health Issues and Health Services
- Portail Santé mieux-être is a Quebec-government website with useful information on health issues. It can also help you find health care services.
- Benefits Finder is a Service Canada tool to search for federal and provincial services. Answer a few questions and you can get a personalized answer.
Information on Financial Help and Tax Benefits
- The Société d'habitation du Québec (Quebec housing corporation) website lists housing programs, in particular the Residential Adaptation Assistance Program.
- Revenu Québec's website lists tax benefits for caregivers, seniors and people with disabilities.
- The Canada Revenue Agency website has 10 videos about federal tax benefits for people with disabilities. One of the videos explains tax benefits for caregivers.