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Should I be paying my childminder

(67 Posts)
IneedAsockamnesty Mon 11-Feb-13 21:59:22

When she cancels for things like her kids being sick or having docters/ hospital appointments.

I usually get the cancellation via txt quite late the night before meaning I don't go to work the entire next day.

I only use her 2 days a week as those days I cannot take kids with me and pay over £110 per day ( 8 hours)

These cancelations are over and above her normal holiday pay as she has 5 weeks a year on top of other absences.

So far out of the last 40 days I have paid for she has late cancelled 10 always citing her kids illness or appointments.

I cannot find our contract but apparently its a standered one (what ever that means) from a printed pad of them.

Sidge Mon 11-Feb-13 22:00:40

I'd be finding a new childminder! She's taking the piss.

I don't pay my CM if she's unavailable to work, whether through her own or someone else's sickness/appointments/holiday.

constantnamechanger Mon 11-Feb-13 22:01:10

no I wouldn't pay

Sidge Mon 11-Feb-13 22:01:56

To clarify, someone else's sickness/appts meaning hers or her family members, not my children's or my sickness/appts.

LunaticFringe Mon 11-Feb-13 22:03:11

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

doughnut44 Mon 11-Feb-13 22:17:46

generally a standard contract will be a template and you would discuss it with your CM before filling it in. If I don't work through my own fault then I do not expect to be paid.
If her kids are ill I don't think you can request a week before - lol- but she should give you plenty of notice for appointments at the hospital.
Ask her for a copy of your contract - she should have one.

SamSmalaidh Mon 11-Feb-13 22:18:51

I didn't pay if my childminder was unavailable, although she did have a certain number of weeks holiday at half pay. If your CM is that unreliable I would be looking for an alternative or nursery.

HSMMaCM Mon 11-Feb-13 22:43:07

Ask her for a.copy of your contract. Until you have that, you don't know if you have agreed to pay for these days or not.

My clients would not pay.

lechatnoir Mon 11-Feb-13 22:44:23

10 days out of 40, a QUARTER, is an absurd amount of time off shock. I charge for holidays but this must be booked at least 4 weeks in advance & definitely wouldn't charge if I / my family were off sick. And last minute cancellations for appointments (which by definition is surely a pre-booked event) is taking to piss - not ideal but why can't your children still go in? I would always try & arrange appointments on my 1 day off a week but if I worked FT then mindee would just come along like my own kids would. I would check your contract & if there is no provision for this either looking elsewhere or asking for a contract amendment in light of the frequency.

Flisspaps Mon 11-Feb-13 22:46:08

If I am sick, or my children are sick, or I can't work for any other reason, then the parents of my minded children don't pay.

If the children I mind are sick, their parents still pay as I am still available for work.

IMO, she is taking the piss.

lechatnoir Mon 11-Feb-13 22:48:24

Eta a printed pad of contracts sounds like the NCMA one & she would have to fill in the relevant section although it doesn't actually have a bit for CM time off for sickness/emergency so I add this under time off for mindee sick. You need to get a copy of your signed & completed contract and I wouldn't feel bad about telling her why you want it.

HSMMaCM Mon 11-Feb-13 22:48:46

Don't go in all guns blazing until you have read the contract, as you might have agreed to pay for all.this.absence. if you have, then you should ask for a contract review.

pluCaChange Mon 11-Feb-13 22:56:34

Even if it is in your contract, it sounds as though you need to move your DC. Then she will have plenty of time, too!

BackforGood Mon 11-Feb-13 23:04:47

I think it's fairly standard practice that you don't pay if she's not available, but ultimately, it depends on what you signed in the contract. Either way - paying or not - that's no use to you as a working parent. I used various CMs over 14-15 yrs (different arrangements with different children in different houses and attending different schools, etc.) and I think in all that time, I can only remember 1 CM having any time off at all - it was a week for a planned op for which I got about 6 weeks notice. I've never had a CM cancel the night before. I'd definitely be looking for alternative childcare.

Delayingtactic Mon 11-Feb-13 23:12:25

I don't pay my CM if she's off sick or her children are. I did feel sorry for her when she had a run of her kids getting D&V which meant that she had to cancel everybody for four days - it must have cost her a fortune. If my DC is sick then I pay naturally. I would be looking elsewhere tbh.

IneedAsockamnesty Tue 12-Feb-13 00:54:29

That's how I figured it should be, if my children don't attend due to a issue my end but she is still available to work then I would expect to pay

But if the issue is her end and it makes her unavailable then I expected that I wouldn't have to.

On top of the cancelled times there have been 2 occasions during the last 40 booked days where at drop off she's announced she is unavailable for the older child to be dropped off after school so that dc has been dropped off at my work instead and.entertained for a few hours before going on up to hers in a cab and 1 time when ive had to leave work to collect the baby who she claimed was ill but my gp couldnt find anything wrong but she still expects the same money to be paid.

Her system of payments gives her no incentive to actually do the work.tbh I wouldn't be bothered if it was not a regular occurrence but its looking much like it is, its a shame because other than that I rather like her but I think I'm going to have to give notice because of this.

Tasmania Tue 12-Feb-13 01:37:58

Wait... you pay her £110 per day?!? Go for a nursery place, if that's the case! I mean... what is she - the Ritz of all Childminders?

You shouldn't be paying a CM if they are unable to work. The whole point about a CM is that they are actually self-employed, and if they get sick, they don't "just get paid".

Ok - read the contract... but really, just look for another CM, because this one is taking the p*ss if she expects to be paid for this.

IneedAsockamnesty Tue 12-Feb-13 01:57:04

That is for 2 children she's the only one I found willing to have a baby and 13yo.

Tasmania Tue 12-Feb-13 02:11:41

Socket - nurseries around me take babies from 3 months (daily rate around £56), and most schools have after school clubs for the grand price of sth. like £9 per afternoon? That would be a lot cheaper than your CM.

And I live/work in one of the more expensive areas in the country - albeit outside London.

IneedAsockamnesty Tue 12-Feb-13 02:30:28

The 13yo is not in mainstream school and would struggle in most club type settings, but I've just found 3 nursery s whose websites look promising, I shall give them a ring to go look at them tomorrow.

But in a ideal world I could find a tactful way of bringing it up with cm and she will magically stop doing it,because if she did stop then it would cease to be an issue but I'm guessing its unlikely shame really because for the sake of just over a grand she will have lost guaranteed long term customers that would have been paying loads more over time,

Silly way to do Buisness if you ask me.

Fightlikeagirl Tue 12-Feb-13 06:41:28

Don't let this scare you off childminders. Most of us are professional and very reliable and would do anything to avoid having to let our parents down and on the rare occasion we're not available we definitely dont charge!

Isabeller Tue 12-Feb-13 06:50:46

It sounds like you'd prefer to stick with her and get some reliability. You do need to find a workable alternative and that's probably what you'll have to go with but you could ask her if she thinks her reliability is likely to dramatically improve soon as you want to stay with her but will be forced to move if she's not in a position to give you the arrangements you need.

eeyore12 Tue 12-Feb-13 06:51:08

Def find a new one, you do know for that amount actually less you could have a nanny come to you, yes you would need to register as an employer and sort out the tax and ni paying but with the £53 a week you would be saving (paying a nanny £10.24 gross a hour) (£167 including employers ni a week) you would soon cover the cost of getting a payroll company to do that for you (about £150 a year). And they would have your children when sick and do nursery duties like children's washing and ironing too.

Hope you get it sorted soon

HSMMaCM Tue 12-Feb-13 07:05:00

When you get your contract ... if it says you don't pay if she's not available (as mine do), ask for your money back. If you want to stay with her, ask for an immediate review.

ZuleikaD Tue 12-Feb-13 07:15:44

I agree you need a copy of your contract. If it's a standard NCMA one then there should be a suggested contract review date, which would be the ideal opportunity.

I certainly don't charge if I'm unable to work because of illness, and on the occasions I have had to go to the doctor I've either taken my mindee with me (with parental permission) or has been left with my DH (who has to take time off to look after our two) - again with parental permission.

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