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cant believe it...what shall i do?

(25 Posts)
woahthere Mon 15-Aug-11 23:45:11

I look after a child 40 hours a week. mum is occasionally a pain re late pick ups, late payment but i love the little girl and on the plus side every now and then i get days off paid. mum is at uni. This month i invoiced as usual for 1st of month, after a week had not been paid but mum had gone away, when she got back i reminded her in no uncertain terms she was late paying, then again yesterday i said she must pay. now she has said by e mail she cannot pay me as she has financial trouble. She wants to not bring her next week and not pay for it and then she wants to not bring her back until october (and not pay for it). This child is worth a massive percentage of my wage and put simply i cannot afford to 'do her a favour' as she asks. I know that contactually she is obliged to pay me for 4 weeks but she wants me to then still have a place for her daughter. I do feel bad for her and would hate to not have the little girl anymore but I cant afford to earn no money. As a negotiation how does this sound....
you must pay this months invoice as agreed...if not all in one go, at some point.... but not bring her, then next month you pay 50% of total contracted as retainer for October. If she will not agree then I will have to cancel contract and she will still be due to pay 4 weeks pay.
I'm peed off because I feel that she must have known for some time that she could not pay and yet she has carried on bringing her daughter when she is at home doing nothing and even having the cheek to pick up late when she lives 25m away from me. Am I being unreasonable....what would you all do?

Humpletumple Mon 15-Aug-11 23:52:14

Cancel the contract.
Fill the place with someone who isn't taking you for a ride.
Write and tell her if she doesn't pay what is owed you will pursue her in the small claims court.
Don't faff about with retainers etc. This is your business. Just end this relationship, get what you are owed and start again. I pay my nursery in advance and always by the 10th of the month. If I don't they will quite reasonably charge me a fine.

mamamaisie Tue 16-Aug-11 08:47:34

I agree about cancelling the contract. Personally I would not negotiate. If you let her pay less now she will expect it again in the future. I am really soft about a lot of things like early drop offs, late collections, agreeing to extra hours, generally trying to please the parents as best I can, etc. but I will not put up with people who do not pay me.

SquishyCinnamonSwirls Tue 16-Aug-11 09:49:57

If her finances are in that much trouble is she claiming the childcare portion of tax credits? Surely that covers a high percentage of what she pays on to you. If she does and she's wanting you to be lenient with your charges then will she be pocketing the tax credits money without informing them that the child isn't coming to you?

woahthere Tue 16-Aug-11 10:35:14

Its so hard to just say cancel the contract though, I see what youre saying, but I have been looking after this little girl for the past year from 8 - 6 most days and have a bond with her so am not sure about just letting that go. squishycinnamonswirls...she is a uni student and has most of her fees paid for her, however, the reason she says she is in financila strife is that they apparently have not paid her since May so she says she has been paying me out of her own pocket. What I dont understand about this though is that surely she will eventually get repaid the money in which case why would she want to not bring her...unless she is hoping i will agree and then she will keep the money for herself...however, for her to get the money I have to fill in a form to show what money I have received so I dont know if she would get away with that. I think i will tell her what I have said above but say that I will not have her back until all the outstanding money is paid and that this is a once only thing and that if it occurred again then I would have to cancel the contract. It is annoying, last month i had so many queries for full timers that I had to turn down and I wish I hadnt now!

nannynick Tue 16-Aug-11 11:12:52

>surely she will eventually get repaid the money

You have no idea if that would ever actually happen. You don't know the circumstances about why the payments to her stopped.

>last month i had so many queries for full timers that I had to turn down and I wish I hadnt now.

Did you keep their phone numbers? Always make a record of enquiries you get, even if you can't help them. That way if the situation changes you can get back to them and you never know they may still be looking.

>I have been looking after this little girl for the past year from 8 - 6 most days and have a bond with her so am not sure about just letting that go.

You are running a business. Sure you form a bond with the child for whom you care but they are not your child. You are doing this job for the income... are you not? If you can help them out by reducing fees for a while fine... but if you can't then you can't. Should your family suffer due to this parents financial situation? It is hard... as a nanny I've had to make the decision to leave a family due to the amount of money being paid not being sufficient to cover my costs. It is very hard decision to make... but if they are not going to pay you then I feel you need to make the child's place available for someone else. Once they have sorted out their finances and repaid you outstanding amounts, then if you still have the space you could then consider taking them back on.

Tanith Tue 16-Aug-11 17:20:31

I'm another that thinks she's taking you for a fool.

A genuine person would have moved hell and high water to have paid you to date - not messed you around with late payments.

A genuine person would have been mortified to have found herself in this position and would have asked you what she could do to clear the arrears - not expected you to disregard her debt, then tell you what she wanted.

Get rid and chase her for arrears. You deserve better than this.

mamamaisie Tue 16-Aug-11 18:08:23

"... after a week had not been paid but mum had gone away"

Was the mum away on holiday? How exactly was she able to pay for that?

thebody Tue 16-Aug-11 18:32:04

cm here... totally totally agree with humpletumple, the whole post, please dont let this woman take you for a ride, you are running a businesss not a charity .

get rid and chase for debt.. check you phone and re contact those parents who wanted spaces....

liking the child is not a good enough reason to not be paid???? thats friendship not business...

ChippingIn Tue 16-Aug-11 18:38:42

I understand how you feel - I wouldn't want not to see the little girl anymore either, especially if it's something that can be resolved. She has treat you badly, but I think it's more a case of head in the sand hoping something works out than anything else...

Does she say why she wasn't paid?

thebody Tue 16-Aug-11 18:50:12

thing is Chippin, what cm hasnt been cheated out of money they are owed?? afraid it makes me a little bit warey of hard luck stories.. if she knew she couldnt pay then she shouldnt have accessed the service... asda dont do credit so i dont see why the poster should..

i had to let go a fabbi little boy last year because the mum kept messing me around re payment, similar hard luck stories. couldnt afford it ..

woahthere Tue 16-Aug-11 20:51:12

So thank you for all your comments...boy, you guys are hard faced! The woman showed me all her documents today, university had not paid her since January, so from January to July she has been paying me out of her overdraft and is massively overdrawn. She said she had 600 pound, invoice was for that much so she asked if she could pay 500 so she would have 100 left. The university are due to pay her at the end of September...and I saw the documentation to support this so I said to her that rather than withdrawing her daughter from me that I would as a one off allow her to pay me at the end of the month rather than at the beginning, she has given me cash today and I am pleased with the outcome...for now. It is at the end of the day a lot easier than starting with a new child and the time it takes for this to happen and building up a relationship and have an unhappy ex client. I am annoyed because I feel that she could have approached me sooner but it does seem that she has been trying to keep up with the payments..I am quite amazed shes managed it to be honest ...£4500 is no small change to have spare. I have made her very aware though that I am not a charity and she knows that when it comes down to it I am running a business and if this kind of thing happens again then I will definately look elsewhere. I plan to give up childminding in a year though so was seriously hoping not to have to have any newbies start between now and then.

nannynick Tue 16-Aug-11 21:21:59

Sounds like a good compromise for now. She really needs to find out from University as to why the payment stopped in January, as you don't what them to start paying again in September for the same thing to happen come January.

Tanith Tue 16-Aug-11 21:43:37

People on this thread tried to help you and your business based on what you told us at the time. Drip-feeding some convenient additional facts, then calling us "hard-faced" for advising you based on our own bad experiences is totally uncalled for.
If anyone deserves to be called "hard-faced", it's those who have conned us out of our earnings. I actually can't afford that, evidently you can.

woahthere Tue 16-Aug-11 21:45:34

She didnt get the form in in time dopey mare. She is foreign and I dont think she quite gets everything thats going on..well she didnt..she does now! I do think its a bit ridiculous though that the finance people wouldnt repay her before the new period, rules and restrictions I guess.

woahthere Tue 16-Aug-11 21:51:02

I wasnt being horrible Tanith, youve taken it the wrong way..in my head it was meant as a slightly in awe of your business savvy heads, and I dont think I was drip feeding anything, bloody chill out, I didnt need attacking like that, and how dare you insinuate that the money doesnt mean anything to me, I work my arse off everyday to earn my money and obviously I was distressed to be confronted with potentially not earn the major proportion of my wage this month when I am overdrawn myself. I wouldnt thank you all and then insult you it was a mocking of myself if anything. Jeez.

Tanith Tue 16-Aug-11 21:58:59

How dare you call me hard-faced when I work just as long and hard as you do - I have only just finished for today - I'm as ready as anyone to help out when needed and I just happen to have had the misfortune to have been conned in the past?

You say you didn't mean it the way I read it and I believe you. Perhaps next time word your post a bit more clearly, add some emoticons so we're all clear on what you do mean?

I'm sorry I misunderstood you.

woahthere Tue 16-Aug-11 22:03:57

???? Oh my god Tanith, I am so not up for this, you take things way too personally I didnt call YOU hard faced, it definately wasnt meant that way, youve upset me now, I'll add a billion bloody emoticons next time. wink shock confused sad

QuintessentialShadow Tue 16-Aug-11 22:42:28

hmm at your attitude to people who try to help you.

hmm at "She is foreign and I dont think she quite gets everything thats going on.." Was that meant as patronizing as it sounds?

gailpottertilsleyplatt Wed 17-Aug-11 08:39:27

Woahthere - ignore 'em.

woahthere Wed 17-Aug-11 08:45:51

what????!!!!! no!!!!! Oh my life! I havent got an attitude to people who tried to help me, I thanked everybody, updated you on what happened and then tried to clear up the misunderstanding, im sorry i used the words hard faced but i swear i didnt mean it horribly, im not defending myself anymore this is ridiculous! why do people have to get attacky, what do you do quintessential, search for threads that you might be able to have a go at people on late at night? Maybe what i said about being foreign was patronising but again it wasnt meant to be, i meant that she doesnt understand English very well, and I know her so I am perfectly entitled to say that. Im not answering anymore ridiculous replies like this. Thank you to everybody who replied that was genuinely helpful. I'm giving up on mumsnet now because the amount of times people end up turning nasty on you is ridiculous and it actually quite upsets me.

woahthere Wed 17-Aug-11 08:46:46

thanks gail smile

gailpottertilsleyplatt Wed 17-Aug-11 09:10:41

Aw don't go woah - just ignore 'em.

QuintessentialShadow Wed 17-Aug-11 09:29:08

What is she doing studying in a UK uni if she does not understand English very well? confused

ChitChattingaway Wed 17-Aug-11 11:12:09

Quintessential - I had a lovely foreign friend at Uni who was studying law. She found it incredibly difficult to understand forms etc. She put a lot of bloody hard work on and got a 2:1 - better than most of the local students. She still needed help to get her head around things - everything took her much longer.

I think you lot are being a bit over sensitive - it's quite clear that the OP had a bit of tongue in cheek when calling you hard faced!!!

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