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To think I shouldn't have to pay CM?

(48 Posts)
DirtyDancingCleanLiving Sat 30-Nov-13 14:48:14

OK, so I have a childminder, and a pretty standard contract - if she can't have my children for any reason (like her/her dc's sickness), I don't have to pay. However, if my children are ill, or I keep them off for any reason, I still have to pay.

Up until now, we've never had to apply these rules - she has never taken a day off and the kids have attended every day (only 3 days a week after school).

On Thursday CM phoned me at 7pm (the night before I was due in work - she was due to have dc from 3.30pm - 6.30pm on Friday). She has an 18month old dd and was calling to tell me that her dd had been very ill over that day and she was taking her to the Dr's the next morning. She wanted to give me the heads up that if her dd was worse the next day, or the Dr diagnosed something contagious, she could well be unavailable. She could let me know for definite by about midday whether she could have them after school, but she didn't think it likely.

I said OK, can't be helped, hope she's OK. Don't worry about it, concentrate on your dd and i'll arrange an early finish. She was thankful for me being so understanding, I was thankful she'd let me know the night before and not the same day.

So, I drop the kids at school the next morning, go to work and arrange a few hours off, so that I finish at 3pm. These hours I had to take out of my holiday allowance and my boss was not thrilled with the short notice.
At 11am I get a text from CM saying her dd is much better, she didn't even end up taking her to the Drs as she seems fine, she thinks it was something she ate and she's now on the mend. So it's fine for her to have the dc, she can pick them up from school as normal.

I reply that I've already booked the hours off and I can't now cancel them as my manager has arranged alternative cover, so not necessary.

Her reply? 'Oh, OK, no probs then smile. Just so we're on the same page though, because I am available, payment will still be due as normal for the day. Hope you enjoy your early finish! smile'

Enjoy my early finish? AIBU to expect to NOT have to pay for the day in these circumstances?

CailinDana Sat 30-Nov-13 14:50:42

YANBU. She is taking the piss.

ItsAllGoingToBeFine Sat 30-Nov-13 14:51:18

I think YANBU but I guess it depends exactly what the contract says. Offering to give you 3.5hours notice of whether she is available or not is taking the piss, and in my book = unavailable.

Does the contract say anything about notice periods?

Alisvolatpropiis Sat 30-Nov-13 14:51:46


That was not the deal. She's taking the piss. What did she think you were going to do when she said she was unavailable? Leave the kids to sort themselves out?

namenotmine Sat 30-Nov-13 14:52:30

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

DIYapprentice Sat 30-Nov-13 14:53:22

YANBU at all - You had to make alternative arrangements because she might not have been available.

Just text back 'I'm sorry, but I'm afraid I don't agree with that. I had to make alternative arrangements because of your phone call, they were not arrangements I made by choice. Telling me at 11 am on the same day that you were suddenly available does not give me sufficient time to unmake the arrangements I have made.'

DirtyDancingCleanLiving Sat 30-Nov-13 14:53:35

No, nothing specifically about notice periods. Just that if SHE is unavailable, I don't pay, but if WE are unavailable we do.

I never even considered a situation like this.

Clearly, she is taking this as because she is available, payment is still due - even though she was only available with a tiny amount of notice.

scarletforya Sat 30-Nov-13 14:53:37

Eh yanbu, she's being very cheeky. Telling you on the same day that she's available is too late. You had already made arrangements!

cheeky cow!

DoubleLifeIsALifeOfSorts Sat 30-Nov-13 14:56:01

It's a case of blurred lines I think, but no, I wouldn't expect to have to pay. You had to make other arrangements otherwise you've have been in real trouble, so she can't expect everyone to rearrange a second time as her circumstances changed for a second time.

I'm sorry for her, but really, she let you know there was potentially no care available, so you have to arrange something else - the end. You, and your boss and the other person covering you shouldn't have to spend time and effort rearranging their work to cover you, and then have to tell everyone to rearrange plans yet again as its all alright now - professional life doesn't work like that!

YouStayClassySanDiego Sat 30-Nov-13 14:56:03

No you shouldn't have to pay.

She initiated the situation which you had to respond to.

I'd be well miffed, how are you going to approach this?

DirtyDancingCleanLiving Sat 30-Nov-13 14:56:54

It's the 'enjoy your early finish' part that really got my back up! 4

I know she's not to know it but the 3.5 hours of holiday I had to book needed to be siphoned off the three days annual leave I have booked next week to coincide with df, meaning I now have only 2 and a bit days off and will have to bugger off to work for 3.5 hours on his day off.

PuppyMonkey Sat 30-Nov-13 14:57:58

The telephone call counted as notification that she was not available IMHO. So yanbu and should text back telling her that you're not paying.

MammaTJ Sat 30-Nov-13 14:58:24

I wouldn't expect to have to pay! YANBU!

DirtyDancingCleanLiving Sat 30-Nov-13 14:59:46

I haven't responded to her text yet. The full month of November is already paid (always paid through childcare vouchers on the 1st of the month).

I'm due to pay her for December tomorrow, so I don't know whether to just text her today and say something along the lines of what the pp said, and add on that I have taken the amount from Friday off Decembers payment.

tracypenisbeaker Sat 30-Nov-13 15:01:18

I would send a text saying 'Just so we're on the same page, I WON'T be bloody paying as I have missed out on wages purely because of you. Hope that helps.'

Tee2072 Sat 30-Nov-13 15:01:40

You took her at her word that she would not be available.

Therefore you do not have to pay her.

TidyDancer Sat 30-Nov-13 15:02:27

I don't think you should have to pay, no.

I suspect there will be some ill feeling over this though, be it from you or her (depending on the decision).

DoubleLifeIsALifeOfSorts Sat 30-Nov-13 15:03:00

I think some people do say really annoying stuff when they know they're being ridiculous and hope to brazen it out. All that happens is that it winds the other person up massively!

Id find that really bloody rude too

CailinDana Sat 30-Nov-13 15:03:17

For all you know her DD could be fine and she's pulling a fast one in order to have a free paid afternoon of Christmas shopping!

What you should have done was say "Oh great you can pick her up then and I'll use the afternoon to do some shopping smile"

NotJustACigar Sat 30-Nov-13 15:04:29

YANBU but is it worth messing up your arrangements with her over this? As it seems to have been working very well up to this point. I would probably take the high road on this occasion and pay but absolutely tell her you're not best pleased or she might feel free to take the piss even more.

YouStayClassySanDiego Sat 30-Nov-13 15:05:10

Don't text, call and sort it out over the phone.

tracypenisbeaker Sat 30-Nov-13 15:05:15

Imagine if you were to ask your boss for your hours back (as she so obviously expected you to do)? He'd think you were unreliable and a piss-about.

MrsOsbourne Sat 30-Nov-13 15:11:05

Agree with Cailin text back that if you have to pay then she can pick up DD as you have some work to do lie in a hot bath with your book

Scarlettsstars Sat 30-Nov-13 15:13:56

I'd agree with notjustacigar. Yanbu but if your dcs are happy with her you may have to roll over a bit. I'd phone, explain that you're surprised and somewhat disappointed at the 'misunderstanding', that you'll pay on this occasion but would like to clarify what is meant by reasonable notice, and 3 hours is not it. Stress that in the future, you have to change your plans at short notice then no payment will be made. Just so you're all on the same page... wink

LifeHuh Sat 30-Nov-13 15:15:04

Re-reading your post I think the problem is the phone call. "She wanted to give me the heads up that if her dd was worse the next day, or the Dr diagnosed something contagious, she could well be unavailable. She could let me know for definite by about midday whether she could have them after school, but she didn't think it likely."
That isn't an unequivocal "I won't be available",and I think was your cue to say that if she couldn't guarantee being available,you would have to take it that she wasn't as you would need to rearrange work committments etc. But she said she would let you know by midday,and you said ok,from my understanding.

I think YANBU and she shouldn't expect to be paid in these circumstances - but I can see why she thinks she will be.

(Must say if it were me,I wouldn't have thought about any of this at the time,and would have done exactly what you did - hope her DD was ok,sort next day,assume CM was out of the picture that week...)

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