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Do I have to still pay when childminder takes a holiday?

(139 Posts)
colacubes Wed 23-Jul-08 01:35:07

Obviously this isnt just a money issue as child minder is a trusted professional who takes care of my dd, so dont want to upset the applecart, but.

I go to pick dd up and the cm informs me she is having a 2 week holiday in 6 weeks, so fine,obviously I will have to make other arrangements, so I mention the situation in regard to fees, to which she replies, "Oh I still get paid, its my holidays"

So my question is, I pay for her service, she is not an employee, so why do I have to pay for her bloody holidays. I am self employed and no bugger pays me. I of course said nothing, my mind ticking, slightly bemused, and trying to think about the bigger picture.

Until today I get a text informing me she is booking another day of later in the year as a holiday and I will have to pay for this day also. So I will either have to pay for her day off and then pay someone else to care for my dd, or pay for her day off and take one myself to care for dd, and not get paid, because, I am self employed!

Is this a normal arrangement with childminders ?

nooka Wed 23-Jul-08 01:46:24

Many threads on this. All of which boil down to what does it say in your contract about holidays. If it says you pay full cost then you have two choices, change childminder, or pay up. Apparently the national childminding organisation recommends all childminders specify full pay for holidays. I agree it sucks.

colacubes Wed 23-Jul-08 01:49:47

Thanks nooka, pains me to do it, would never do it if it wasnt my child's care, self employed but with employee benefits, Im in the wrong job.

SofiaAmes Wed 23-Jul-08 04:42:37

My childminder got paid for her holidays, but it was in her contract that we signed when she took our kids on. She always let us know at the beginning of the year (school year, I seem to remember) what her holidays would be for the year. She always booked her holidays during school holidays so that we could organize holidays at the same time. She would certainly not have only given us 6 weeks notice for a 2 week holiday...that's really inconsiderate. And personally I find it unprofessional to text professional information to clients. I don't think it would be unreasonable to ask her to let you know in writing her holidays for the year in advance and for her to give you a contract stating what the terms of her employment are.

BradfordMum Wed 23-Jul-08 07:17:37

I charge parents for their holidays.
I don't charge for mine.

All childminders are different.

It all depends on what the contract says. If you signed it, and that's what it states on the contract, then yes, you do have to pay.
I suggest you look at it and see what it says.

ElizaDoolitle Wed 23-Jul-08 07:26:55

It amazes me that there are parents who sign contracts with a childcare provider without reading them!

It also amazes me that childminders don't make their position clear. When I have potential parents round I make sure they are fully aware of my payment policy before they have even decided to go with me.

Childminders are not civil servants, we are self-employed and can charge whatever we want!

(can you tell I'm getting a little annoyed with these threads? wink

SazzlesA Wed 23-Jul-08 07:33:25

Message withdrawn

motherinferior Wed 23-Jul-08 07:55:31

Mine charged half rate.

Well, many self employed people charge a rather higher daily rate than childminders - mine is around 10 times that of my former childminder. I think paying a holiday rate for someone who is in many ways effectively an employee - and who does probably the most important job in my life - is completely fair.

aGalChangedHerName Wed 23-Jul-08 07:56:53

I don't charge for mine but do charge for parents as i am available to work.

I work out fees over the year and do a set monthly fee. Parents don't feel like they are forking out extra money when they are on hols.

Do you have a contract with your CM? It surprises mw when parents don't seem to know how/what their CM charges for.

AtheneNoctua Wed 23-Jul-08 08:22:36

I would never sign up to pay a childminder for her hols. But, I would be willing to pay for my hols and even bank hols. But, if it is in the contract and you signed it, then you will have to pay them or give her notice. (frankly, I would give notice)

Whether or not I was annoyed with her would depend on whether she failed to communicate this detail of the arrangement, or whether I was silly and missed it. Again, looking at the contract, will answer this question. If it is not in the contract, I would not pay it.

Also, another thing to consider, is there a cap on how many hols she can take? And how many she can expect to be paid for?

motherinferior Wed 23-Jul-08 08:29:09

Yes, my CM was very up-front, and was also both moderate about the amount of holiday she took and told us well in advance. You'd get a piece of paper with her summer holiday details on in February!

I honestly didn't mind paying holiday rates. And I'm the meanest person around and self-employed myself.

LoveMyGirls Wed 23-Jul-08 08:35:46

I charge half for mine.

I think we do deserve some payment for holidays as we are low paid the vast majority of the time and we work long hours. At least 1 of the 4 weeks holiday I have per year is spent working anyway doing paperwork, touching up paintwork, deep cleaning, rotating the toys and generally making sure my house is ready for business (of course it's ok the rest of the time but I like to get everything ready like I'm opening for the first time)

colacubes Wed 23-Jul-08 08:49:10

Thanks for all your responses, I appreciate all your thoughts, seems I will have to grin and bare it

Some good suggestions, I will be checking how many days she is entitled too before the day is out, could finish me off the way the economy is.

Ripeberry Wed 23-Jul-08 08:50:52

Maybe i'm a bit naive, but once i'm registered as a childminder i won't be offering childcare during school holidays or bank holidays but i would not expect any payment if a) I myself or my children were ill or b)I was going on holiday.
If the parents of my mindees were going away, i would just ask for a retainer fee or a small charge.
It all depends on the circumstances of the famillies.
My childminder always stated that if she was ill or she went on holiday that the parents did not have to pay.
This is why it's very important to read contracts with a fine toothcomb to stop having misunderstandings like this.
Anyway, i would be too embarased to ask someone else to pay for my hols, as other self-employed people don't have that luxury.

aGalChangedHerName Wed 23-Jul-08 08:51:40

That's a good point LMG. I don't charge for my hols but like you at least 1 or sometimes 2 of my weeks are spent on paperwork etc.

This years hols will be spent updating all my policies and adding some new for the new CC type of inspections. Bet there's not many other self employed workers who spend their holidays working sad

DH is already moaning about it. He wants us to spend the whole 2 weeks doing fun stuff, but that's not gonna happen.

BradfordMum Wed 23-Jul-08 11:53:11

Ripeberry - If you're not offering all year round care, then you may find you struggle to fill your spaces. If you only attract teachers children, then fine, but I find that I am not able to pick and choose my families! I currently start work at 5.50am, and that's what the parent needs and I need the money!

Sally x

AtheneNoctua Wed 23-Jul-08 12:36:09

I think it is normal for a business to have some overhead tasks that need doing whilst they are not actually offereing whatever service it is they provide. P lumber would need to make sure his tools are stocked and that he/she has transportation to the jobs he/she has coming in. An accountant might tidy up his office so propective customers think he is net and tidy and will take care of their money properly. And so on...

Of course, you have to charge enough in the time you are providing your service to cover these expenses. But it not unusual for a small busineess owner to put in extra hours which are not specifically reimbursed. An employee would expect that, but not a business owner.

motherinferior Wed 23-Jul-08 12:37:42

Yes but plumbers and accountants charge LOTS AND LOTS OF MONEY.

AtheneNoctua Wed 23-Jul-08 12:44:37

A plumber does not have jobs lined up back to back all day long five days a week. When you compare hourly rates it comes out more. But a childminder can work for 3 families at the same time and for much longer hours.

And, of course, childminders themselves vary hugely. In my area a childminder is about £6 or £7 per hour per child. But I've seen some people on mumsnet charge only say £2.50 and give a discount for second sybling.

My point is just that it is normal for any small business owner to have some things to do outside of providing the service.

scootermum Wed 23-Jul-08 12:45:00

I did read and sign the contract for my cm, and would agree with it either way-but I cant remember what it said!And now I dont want to ask her as she will just say 'dont pay' because she is so lovely and knows we are broke at the moment..but I dont want to diddle her..I think we will just pay her anyway-she does such a great job for us that I dont begrudge it really..

TJ1976 Wed 23-Jul-08 13:23:12

With regard to cm paid time off it will depend on the cm and the parents. I dont think there are any hard and fast rules. Parents have different amounts of leave (which is paid for by their company) unless they are self emp, which to be honest isn't my problem. I know of so many cms that have come unstuck on not getting any time off/or just a couple of weeks for one reason or another. Each scenario will be different. I offer a service that is very flexible and I work long hours. As cms we also take time to study, attend workshops, college etc. I would let any parent know who wanted to use my service that I expect paid time off. If they want me then they normally wouldn't question this and accept it as a business decision - nothing personal.

imananny Wed 23-Jul-08 13:53:59

scootermum - do you not know where your contract is?

scootermum Wed 23-Jul-08 14:41:43

Havent the foggiest!

scootermum Wed 23-Jul-08 14:41:47

Havent the foggiest!

wotulookinat Wed 23-Jul-08 14:52:33

I don't pay my childminder for her holidays.

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