What is the self-directed option?

The self-directed option allows you or someone you designate to manage your personal care services by:

  • Hiring and managing your own employee
  • Setting the wages for your employee, following minimum wage laws
  • Choosing a Fiscal Intermediary (FI) to handle payroll, taxes, and workers' compensation insurance for your employee

There are different guidelines and requirements based on the program that you are enrolled in. If you choose to participate in the self-directed option, your Care Coordinator will refer you to a Skills Trainer. The Skills Trainer will provide you with the information, training, and resources that are necessary for successfully managing your services and caregivers.

What are the benefits to choosing the self-directed option over agency staffing?

The self-directed option allows you to have more control over your services and who provides them. In some cases, employees may have an opportunity to earn a higher wage through the self-directed option.

What happens if I choose the self-directed option but decide agency staffing would work better for me?

You can return to agency staffing at any time, subject to the availability of staffing. Your Care Coordinator will help you with the transition.

What does the self-directed option require?

There are some responsibilities that go along with participating in the self-directed option:

  • Attending Skills Training
  • Recruiting, interviewing, hiring, and training your employee
  • Terminating your employee, if necessary
  • Working with your employee to complete all required documents
  • Arranging for backup staffing if your employee is unable to come to work
  • Keeping track of and approving your employee's hours
  • Keeping copies of all required paperwork
  • Managing your employee and providing feedback on performance
  • Following the self-directed option guidelines and applicable program rules 
  • Working with the Fiscal Intermediary on anything related to payroll, taxes, new hires, and workers' compensation

How much work will this require?

Depending on the program you are enrolled in, there can be a lot of paperwork in the beginning. Your Skills Trainer and Fiscal Intermediary (FI) will be available to assist and answer questions for you along the way. Ongoing, you will be responsible for scheduling your employee and completing required paperwork for new employees. You will also be responsible for reviewing, approving, and submitting timesheets to your FI twice a month. 

How will my employee get paid?

Your Fiscal Intermediary will process payroll on your behalf. Your employee will fill out a timesheet, which you will approve and submit to the FI. The FI will pay your employee twice a month according to a payroll schedule that will be provided to you.

How long does it take to get started on the self-directed option?

The time frame can vary depending on the date of your training and how soon your required paperwork is completed. Your Care Coordinator will offer to seek agency staffing while you are working on the self-directed option.

Where can I get more information?

Current consumers should contact their Care Coordinator. If you are not currently a SeniorsPlus Care Coordination client but would like information, please contact the Policy and Contacts Manager by calling (207) 440-2316 or emailing cgrant@seniorsplus.org.