Take California, for example.
Under AB 889, household "employers" (aka "parents") who hire a babysitter on a Friday night will be legally obligated to pay at least minimum wage to any sitter over the age of 18 (unless it is a family member), provide a substitute caregiver every two hours to cover rest and meal breaks, in addition to workers' compensation coverage, overtime pay, and a meticulously calculated timecard/paycheck.Just think about that for a moment if you have ever offered a tenner, some crisps, and a bowl of Celebrations to a nephew/niece, or next door neighbour's teen, to sit and watch the TV for a few hours while you pop out. Perhaps even on a night like tonight.
Failure to abide by any of these provisions may result in a legal cause of action against the employer including cumulative penalties, attorneys' fees, legal costs and expenses associated with hiring expert witnesses, an unprecedented measure of legal recourse provided no other class of workers - from agricultural laborers to garment manufacturers. (On the bright side, language requiring an hour of paid vacation time for every 30 hours worked was amended out of the bill in the Senate.)
If, like Californians, we were similarly afflicted with ridiculously idealistic and astoundingly dozy lefties in charge, imagine the hassle this would cause.
- Firstly, no-one under 16 would be allowed (this would probably fall into both child labour laws and panic about anyone younger being unable to look after anyone, even themselves).Or perhaps you just don't fancy going to parties anymore. Best stay in and tell the teen they've lost the chance of a bit of easy cash.
- You'd be required to ask for a P45 or else make them fill in a P46 which must be submitted on the first day of their employment.
- Assurances would have to be sought, in writing, that the person was eligible to work in the UK under illegal immigration laws.
- They would require an enhanced CRB clearance to work with kids before setting foot in your house.
- You'd be required to register with HMRC as an employer, complete with tax reference number.
- You'd be required to issue a contract of employment within 2 months of their starting to look after your sprogs.
- Say you were off to a party at around 7pm, and expected to return at midnight, you couldn't pay less than £18.20 for under 18s, or £24.60 for 18-20s. As the California law requires a stand-in for breaks every 2 hours, you'd either pay that twice, or make arrangements for someone else over 16 - who has been P46'd, CRB'd, immigration-cleared, and registered for tax - to mosey along a couple of times during the night ... at the same NMW rates.
- Employers' NI contribution would be required to be paid by you at 13.8% if either earn more than £136 in any one year.
- Don't forget the mandatory regular printed payslip showing all deductions.
- Any tax accrued by the babysitter(s) would have to be deducted by you and sent to HMRC by the 19th of each month.
- In April each year, you'd submit your babysitters' PAYE and NIC P11 stats and a P35 return.
- I'd advise you to take a note of the ACAS helpline number and/or take out employer's litigation insurance.
Those lefties are such a caring bunch, aren't they?