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CMs - WWYD in this situation......

(13 Posts)
looneytune Wed 01-Dec-10 00:01:09

I'm not going to go into the ins and outs and why I'm asking but I wanted to see what you'd have done in this situation.....

One of my mindees comes 2 days a week. Recently I didn't have said mindee on one of the days as they went away. But I was asked if I could do 4 hours work on another day instead. I'm fully booked with children all the time so the only way I could honour that request was by asking dh (assistant) to work those hours to cover the ratio change.

Would you have charged for those 4 hours or done it for free considering they didn't bring mindee on the other day (bearing in mind that the day mindee didn't come, I was working the full day as per usual, just with that one less mindee)?

TIA. I'm not expecting replies at this time of night so logging off now but will look in the morning

minderjinx Wed 01-Dec-10 06:59:59

I would certainly have charged for the extra four hours in those circumstances - as you say, it's not as if you got a day off on the other day, and you did put yourself out (or your dh out) to cover the extra time. I might not have charged if the changed hours actually suited me better - e.g gave me a day off and meant having an extra child on a day when I had a place anyway. But even then, I'd make it clear it was a one-off agreement, and that in other circumstances I would charge.

lifeinagoldfishbowl Wed 01-Dec-10 07:02:04

I would charge.

It's a bit like booking a holiday - you book and pay for the dates you have arranged and if you want an extra day you book and pay for that too.

looneytune Wed 01-Dec-10 07:17:04

Thanks guys. Was upset last night as the parent thought I'd have waived the fee considering their child hadn't come the other day. They understand I'm running a business etc but were a little surprised I actually charged it I had to get dh to change his plans (and loose his agreed lie in lol) to cover it and I wouldn't expect him to do that unless he felt he was earning some extra dosh for his family!! I may have not charged if I could have covered the extra myself but I already have 4 toddlers each day as it is so no way I could cover without an assistant.


HSMM Wed 01-Dec-10 07:30:20

I would have charged, unless I had agreed it was a swap which also suited me. (Have only swapped once)

HSMM Wed 01-Dec-10 07:31:25

It's the same as asking for an extra day and then saying "I didn't think I had to pay, because I had a week off last the Summer". The time off and the extra time are separate things.

looneytune Wed 01-Dec-10 07:36:36

Thanks HSMM. I think what didn't help is that I had all other mindees off yesterday and as she's always gone on about how flexible she is (doesn't work and if does, very adhoc) so last week I casually asked if it would make a difference if we switched that mindees day to Monday so I could sort something yesterday. I made it clear it was not a problem if not but she was happy to swap. They had a nightmare weekend and she collected on Monday saying how pleased she was that I'd swapped days and that it had worked out very well for them. We were all happy. Then when she quizzed this amount she mentioned how she's been flexible for me. I wanted to remind her how she didn't have to, how I've never charged for lateness, how I've waited when I should have gone on the school run when she is late etc. Thing is, we have a very good relationship otherwise but now I feel that's gone as in her head I was wrong to charge She has been emailing back with apologies and saying she just wanted to get her head round it but it's the tone of it all that's made me think she is expecting favours from dh now.

Anyway, moan over, thanks for confirming I was right to charge

Danthe4th Wed 01-Dec-10 11:08:53

When she booked it you should have made it clear that it would be an extra as you had to get cover. Also she was flexible for you but not vice versa, that is probably why she asked for the extra day, in her mind she was doing you a favour for changing her day. Thats the problem with being flexible no one knows where they stand.
I would forget about it and stick to the contracted times, this is also easier if payment is made in advance as you both then know whats paid for.
I have a parent who we both give and take as it suits me on that day but if she doesn't send her child then I don't charge as that is what suits me and her, but once you start this arrangement then you have to accept it goes both ways and it can get awkward. She knows if she asks for a different day then I will charge as we've discussed it.

spidookly Wed 01-Dec-10 11:19:22

My DDs go to a CM 2 days per week.

There is no way I would expect my CM not to charge me for any additional hours she worked.

In fact last week my DDs missed their 2 regular days with CM and went another day.

I fully expect to be billed for that and will query it should she not bill me.

I do sort of have related problems with the DDs' other CM. She's all "flexible" and always offering to swap days and it drives me a bit bonkers (although she's lovely).

It's all clear - if the girls miss days then I pay, if she's not available, then I don't, if she works extra then I do.

It's weird enough having a client relationship with someone who starts to feel like part of the extended family, best to keep it nice and inflexible, then there is no room for misunderstanding.

looneytune Wed 01-Dec-10 13:42:04

Dan - you're ASSUMING we didn't have that conversation. I DID say it would be charged as I was unable to just swap due to numbers and therefore dh was needed. It was AFTER that occasion that I asked if we could swap and it was said roughly like this 'quick question, I'm not sure if you have anything booked or if it makes any difference to you what day X comes but I thought I'd ask and PLEASE say no if it's a problem, but I just wondered if there was a possibility of X coming Mon instead of Tues. Honestly don't mind either way, don't want to cause any trouble, just thought I'd ask'. To which she said it was fine and didn't make a difference.

I DO charge in advance (invoice sent on 20th of the month, needs to be paid by 1st of the following month for care for that month i.e. sent 20/11, pay by 1/12, to cover December). Any adhoc extras are added to the following months bill as everyone prefers it neat and tidy that way. So she was emailed the invoice BEFORE any swap was mentioned for me (it was yesterday I swapped with Mon)

All of the above is also clearly in my Handbook and a new one (with a form signed confirming she'd read it) was given out within the last month or two.

I'm a bit hmm about your comment that she was flexible and I wasn't. I've been more than happy to be flexible and have helped out when I can but unless someone is on holiday or sick, I'm chocka full and am UNABLE to switch days (as much as I wish I could) so the only option is to pay an assistant. The fact that the assistant I used on this occasion was my dh shouldn't make a difference! Especially as he's was made redundant over a year ago and we desperately need the money. As I said earlier, I'd have happily swapped but DH had to change plans for that day to help out.

Anyway, I've already confirmed with her that we'll stick with agreed contracted hours from now on and do no extras with an assistant and then we all know where we stand.

Thanks for your view, I just wanted to make it clear how it all went.

looneytune Wed 01-Dec-10 13:43:11

spidookly - thanks for that. Yes, decided it's best to keep it inflexible.

lollipopmother Thu 02-Dec-10 08:58:05

I would've charged Looney, this happens to me quite regularly as I have a parent that works from home and is very flexible. Sometimes we arrange to swap the days (if I can) so that it fits with something they are doing, if I can do it that is fine, we do a straight swap.

If they are ill on their day she often brings him a different day if I can fit him in, I still charge. I am useless at being firm but it never even crossed my mind to not charge tbh. Plus 'late drop-off does not constitute a late pick-up' is in my policies, that also means 'just because you didn't come on your normal day doesn't mean you can turn up when you fancy and not get charged extra'!! grin

looneytune Thu 02-Dec-10 10:04:35

Thanks And yes, I have all that in my handbook too so it's all there in black and white.

Anyway all sorted, even though I had apologies by email, mum rang last night and wanted to make sure I was ok as she knew I was upset and she wanted to reassure me she did NOT think I was money grabbing or anything (she threw £20 at me on Friday insisting we got a takeaway and I tried and tried to give it back but she INSISTED so she knows I'm not like that) She's lovely like that but we wouldn't have got a takeaway if she hadn't given it so the business side has to remain as business - I'm always being given beer, chocolate and stuff and I tried to stop it at the start but it's awkward when someone INSISTS and of course we have a friendly relationship! Just makes the business side more awkward but we seem to have sorted all that now

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