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to not want to pay an AP who leaves suddenly?

(14 Posts)
Maddie114 Wed 14-Sep-11 23:50:31

This is my first post so please bear with me..
Having had a great au pair first time round for 18 months, I've just had my second ever au pair leave without giving any notice. She stayed in our house over the summer and we were away half of the time on holiday. Obviously I made this clear at the beginning and she was quite happy to be paid for doing nothing and be able to enjoy London. She never worked extra hours, had 10 hours off a week to study, she went back home on her third week here because we were away and this didn't come out of her holiday allowance.. all in all, I think I have been more than fair and flexible with her. She has a lot of friends nearby, hardly ever had to babysit and was out most nights. We went away again for two weeks and she can't have done more than a days' work. The day before our return she texted me to say she had to leave urgently and didn't know when she would be back. She packed up all her things and left. Technically she is owed 3 weeks' pay but we were away for the last 2 weeks of that and I feel like a complete mug if I pay her, for what was basically a rent-free summer holiday in London. Is this totally unreasonable? We took her on over the summer on the basis that she would be with us for the year.
It is not the money that bothers me but the principle. Her excuse for leaving is difficult to believe and I suspect, but cannot prove, that she has been dishonest about her intentions. I feel totally mucked around and that I am being a walkover if I pay her but I also feel that in doing so I am just as bad as she is....

clappyhands Wed 14-Sep-11 23:54:18

has she asked to be paid?

WetAugust Thu 15-Sep-11 00:05:48

I think YABU

When wages are concerned there's no 'techically' about it - you either owe her money or you don't.

I doubt she had much of a holiday in London living in an empty house with no wage to enable her to do very much.

Blueberties Thu 15-Sep-11 00:22:48

How tedious for you. Maybe she doesn't expect to be paid if she's already upped and left. Hopefully anyway.

HipHopOpotomus Thu 15-Sep-11 00:23:26

So an au pair didn't work out? I've never had one but the friends I do seem to churn through them until they find one that 'clicks', becomes part if the family and stays for sometime.

Whatever you feel the principle is, YWBU not to pay her for the time she was with you. It's not her fault you were away lots, and feel like you under-utilised her.

IrmaMuthafucker Thu 15-Sep-11 00:26:29

Did you expect her to clean while you were away? Did you expect her to be available whenever you needed her? Did she look after pets?

If you answered yes to any of the above you need to pay her. Did you find her through an agency?

aldiwhore Thu 15-Sep-11 00:44:45

If you owe her, pay her and put it down to a bad experience.

Judge Judy would say 'pay her, I don't give a tiny rat's ass about your holiday'....

HipHopOpotomus Thu 15-Sep-11 00:52:08

Aldi I've been getting into JJ lately grin

Caught myself using some if her moves on DD. << turns telly off >>

IrmaMuthafucker Thu 15-Sep-11 00:57:48

shock JJ would never say "ass"! <<faints>>

empirestateofmind Thu 15-Sep-11 01:04:48

Pay her what you owe her.

And change all the locks.

WorkingItOutAsIGo Thu 15-Sep-11 07:58:39

Couple of things concern me about your post and I can't judge your reasonableness at this point:

Saying she had ten hours off for lessons like it was special sounds odd...was she working the rest of the time? APs only meant to work 25 hours plus babysitting, so have up to 143 hours off.

Why do you owe her 3 weeks money? You are meant to pay weekly? Have you been paying her regularly and on time?

Maddie114 Thu 15-Sep-11 13:52:32

Thanks for all the replies, really helpful. She was paid as an au pair plus, so 35 hours a week, but actually only did 25 hours. If I had known she would be leaving, which I suspect she knew, of course I would not have left her in my house for two weeks. I would have asked her to leave as she did not do any work while we were away. All I had asked her to do was buy some basic food items for the kids and cook a simple meal for our return and that was not done. She had heaps of friends and was always going out, so I had no worry that she would mind being alone, she was 27 years old, very independent and knew her way around. Plenty of students come to London to study and rent rooms, I guess I don't feel that I should be paying her to stay in my house. She knew we were going away, took advantage and then scarpered. Call me cynical but that's how it looks to me. We didn't get her through an agency and she has asked to be paid and I'm in two minds. I want a clear conscience but it will leave a bad taste in my mouth as feels unfair...

Maddie114 Thu 15-Sep-11 15:31:46

Ok, update, discussing it here gave me the courage to actually discuss this with her and she agrees with me! So we met half way and agreed to pay her for the time she actually was with us working and not for the second holiday time. I think this INBU.. (is this an actual acronym?)

woowoo2 Thu 15-Sep-11 15:44:56

YABU. Pay her for HER time.

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