Alzheimer client

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by Eric502, Feb 14, 2020.

  1. Eric502

    Eric502 LawnSite Senior Member
    Male, from Kentucky
    Messages: 837

    This is not in relation to 2019 taxes, more so looking forward. I do my own taxes and mine are not all that complicated. I don't want to ask an accountant if it is a simple answer of "oh yea claim it on line blah....."

    That said I have a client (wife's grandmother) who is beginning to really loose it due to Alzheimers. I am trying to foresee the days when she may not be able to pay or forgets to pay, or getting payment becomes way too much trouble to collect. Has anyone ever been in a similar spot like this where they did not want to drop the client, but something has to give? Is there a way I can use her service as a tax write off in some capacity?
    RussellB likes this.
  2. RussellB

    RussellB LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 16,069

    I doubt it. Someone should have Power of Attorney that pays her bills for her. Shouldn't be hard to find out who that is.

    GRANTSKI LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,949

    You mean like a donation ? Idk but I’m curious as well. Have a blind guy who I’ve had trouble getting paid . Not keeping him but - that is a good question.
    Cam15, Eric502 and hort101 like this.
  4. starry night

    starry night LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,809

    I suspect that you could deduct a "services in-kind" donation but it would require a written confirmation by someone in his family of dates and time spent. So, a slim chance that you could document all of this.
    Cam15 and hort101 like this.
  5. Mac-s Lawn & Snow

    Mac-s Lawn & Snow LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 422

    My suggestion for a client like this would be to get a reciept book and write a receipt after every service. I had a neighbor/client like this and her daughter would tape notes to the door saying things like Mary ***** does not have a dog. Most days when I mowed there would be a water dish out for her dog and sometimes she would be wandering here yard looking for her dog. Most of the times I wouldn't get paid and I didn't care. I talked to my accountant about this once and he said you don't claim the income and just be happy with the fact your doing something nice to help someone out.
    starry night, Cam15, Wolfgang and 4 others like this.
  6. OP

    Eric502 LawnSite Senior Member
    Male, from Kentucky
    Messages: 837

    Yea for clarification... I don't mind doing the good deed. In reality it is at minimum a $60 yard and she only pays 38. BUT if there is a way I can not worry about her payment, but take what she would have paid and count it as a donation, a write off, or something on taxes.... then I would like to know. If for nothing else so I am aware of my options.
    Cam15 likes this.
  7. Trees Too

    Trees Too LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,595

    Ditto! ^^^^ With dementia patients that are still on their own, there is generally someone else (e.g. family member) that handles all the finances, including bill paying.
    Cam15, Eric502 and RussellB like this.
  8. Matthews Lawn Care

    Matthews Lawn Care LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,007

    I’ve done some stuff for non profits. You can’t really “write it off” as a donation. Really you lose the labor if you’re a solo op on things like this but if you have employees, you’re still paying them to be on the job and any other expenses(materials, fuel, etc) are going to be written off anyway. So, in reality, you are getting to “write off” you’re “donation” because you have expenses associated with the particular job. You’re just not able to “write off” the discounted price as a charitable donation like you can if you wrote a check to a charity.
  9. kinneberg lawn service

    kinneberg lawn service LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 270

    Interesting I have had few clients in past in same situation. Family members close friends and even neighbors have taken care of the payments and assisted them. As others have noted powet of attorney or perhaps a trust executor you can send bill to. If this were a a church you could do the work get pd and donate back. In this situation however that doesn't apply you dont get paid it can be bad debt expense. Its always nice helping someone out and good pr but there comes a time when you just cant. I ususlly don't mind the small things getting mail or paper on occasion but providong free mow costs you and your family.
  10. OP

    Eric502 LawnSite Senior Member
    Male, from Kentucky
    Messages: 837

    Gotcha... and this is how I was thinking about the situation myself, logically. I guess I was just hoping by some sliver of a chance that I might be wrong. And yes I am a solo, cash basis, operator. So I kind of figured I had very little options.

    As others suggested, yes there will be a power of attorney (my mother in law most likely). If I have to deal with my MIL I might as well drop it. Dealing with her is a whole other challenge.

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