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Employee Assistance Program Benefits for Families

October 2, 2019

6 Employee Assistance Program Benefits Your Spouse, Children, and Dog Should Know About.

Do you know about the Employee Assistance Program benefits offered to you by your employer? If so, then you already know that these services, such as access to professional financial advice and short-term counseling, are offered to employees at no cost.

But did you know that your family members can also take advantage of the Employee Assistance Program (EAP) benefits? Learn how to bring the benefits of an EAP home for everyone in your family to enjoy.

EAP Basics for Family Members

When family members realize they have access to EAP benefits, several questions often follow. Here are the answers to some of the most common inquiries.

Who qualifies as a family member to use an EAP?
Every EAP has its own stipulations for what makes a qualified family member. But for most, EAP benefits are available to all members of an employee’s household.

How much do EAP services cost?
Whether an employee or a family member seeks out assistance from an EAP, the services are free. If a referral beyond the EAP is recommended, every effort will be made to provide the most cost-effective option(s).

Will my employer know my family or I contacted the EAP?
Confidentiality is of critical importance to the EAP and all are held to the HIPAA policies and standards. An EAP will not share information with others without written permission. An exception would occur if someone is in danger of hurting themselves or others, or as otherwise required by law.

How can a family member of an employee start the process?
If a family member wishes to speak with an EAP representative, they should use the contact information provided by the organization. To verify their identity, your family members may need to provide their name, address, and name of your employer.

After a brief conversation about benefits in question, the EAP will help determine the best course of action.


6 Employee Assistance Program Benefits for Family Members

EAPs are often associated with counseling for personal concerns, such as emotional health, relationships, grief/loss, substance abuse, legal challenges, or debt consolidation. While family members of employees can take advantage of such benefits, there are some other EAP perks to be aware of as well.


1. Home Repair Services

With homeownership comes great pride, but also a great responsibility. Home maintenance is a full-time job that tends to cancel out weekend free time. If your spouse has been stressing over sudden and costly home repairs, remind them that they can call the EAP for help.

They’ll connect you with a local expert who can take over the job and help your spouse reclaim their weekend.


2. Partnerships

No man, or EAP, is an island. In other words, your EAP likely works with a variety of other organizations with the uniformed goal of benefiting humanity. For example, Workplace Solutions partners with LifeSpeak On Demand, a digital wellness platform that helps employees thrive. See what types of partnerships your EAP offers, as these benefits are available for family members as well.


3. Pet Services

Even Fido can enjoy the benefits of an EAP for family members. Between obedience training, grooming, and doggy daycare, scheduling the needs of man’s best friend can be a bit “ruff”. Instead of stressing, let your EAP match your furry family members with local and reputable service providers.


4. Childcare

Eleven million children under the age of five are in a childcare arrangement in America on a weekly basis. Finding the right childcare situation for your family is critical. Your EAP can help find childcare services that meet federal standards and your family’s needs.


5. Vacation Planning Assistance

It’s hard enough to find time as a family to go on vacation, let alone plan one. As a family, decide on a destination. Then let your EAP help you flesh out a budget and itinerary through a financial consultation and location-specific resources. An EAP isn’t a substitute for a travel agent, but their vacation planning services can help you and your family make that dream vacation a reality.


6. Financial Services

Whether your spouse is coming up on retirement, you’re looking to buy a new home that better fits your family, or your child is preparing for college and its associated costs, an EAP can help lift the financial fog and map out a clear path to success.

In general, EAPs are great for anyone in need of a financial health check. Many turn to EAP services for help in developing a plan to erase the financial debt. This is a life-changing service that can be utilized by family members as well.

EAPs are a great confidential resource for mental and emotional support for employees and their families. If a member of your household is traveling through a difficult season in life, this might be a great time to remind them about the great benefits available through the Employee Assistance Program.

And when it comes time to plan your next family vacation or find a pet sitter for the dog, remember your EAP benefits extend past the office and into your home. If you’re ready to enjoy some of the more exciting EAP perks, reach out to your organization today.

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