Are Children Liable to Pay for Their Parent's Nursing Home?

Typically, children are not legally responsible to support their parents and the power of attorney doesn’t change this. However, children can take on this liability, sometimes unwittingly, under the documents they sign upon nursing home admission or commitments they may make to the nursing home. Further, some states have “filial responsibility” laws that do confer liability on the children. Usually these are old laws that are on the books but are not enforced. However, Pennsylvania’s filial responsibility law, 23 Pa.C.S. § 4603, is relatively new and may be enforced. To get a definite answer based on your circumstances and Pennsylvania law and practice, you will need to consult with a Pennsylvania elder law attorney. To find one near you, go here:

For more on adult childrens’ liability for an aging parent’s medical bills, click here.