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How mediators can help family caregivers

As a caregiver for your elderly parent, you may find yourself at odds with your siblings on occasion. Your brothers or sisters sometimes dispute important aspects of your parent's care, including medical treatment, living arrangements and caregiving responsibilities. Sometimes, the conflicts become so contentious that nothing is accomplished except making everyone angry.

When family members clash over the care of their senior parent, they may choose to work with a mediator. A mediator is a neutral professional who can help the parties in a dispute come to a mutually satisfactory arrangement. There are many ways that mediators can help caregivers.

Ease family conflicts

Many people think of mediation as a process in divorce. But elder mediation is quickly gaining traction. Its main appeal is that it helps families maintain good relationships while resolving hot-button issues. A mediator does not take sides, but listens to each party and helps obtain a mutually beneficial solution.

Avoid court battles

Mediators can go a long way in preventing expensive, time-consuming court battles. No one looks forward to taking a family member to court. Instead, you can work with your siblings in mediation. And because this process is private, your discussions will stay out of public record.

Save time and money

Going to trial is expensive and time-consuming. Mediation is usually more cost-effective and time-efficient than going to court. Elder care can get expensive, so the money that you save in mediation can go toward other important costs.

Provide resources

As a caregiver, you need all the outside help you can get. Mediators can help connect you with helpful resources for your parent. These may include estate planners, care managers, financial professionals, attorneys or living facilities.

With a mediator, you and your siblings can come together and work toward your aging parent's best interests.

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