Caregivers: Practical Legal Tools

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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.


Housing Issues

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)


Useful Resources

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