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Au Pair - London Travel costs

(11 Posts)
Lasvegas Mon 07-Mar-05 14:26:57

I'm first time host to au pair in zone 2 in london. Do I have to pay for a weekly bus/tube ticket in addition to her pocket money? or are travel expenses down to her? To collect DD and do shopping it is 10 minute walk so she doesn't need to transport to fulfil her tasks.

uwila Mon 07-Mar-05 15:08:28

I think you should pay for any travel that is required for her job (i.e. if she needs to get on the tube to take one of your kiddies to an activity). Otherwise, I THINK (not sure though) that this is a taxable benefit. If the travel is not for her work withyou, than I see no reason why you should be obligated to pay for it (unless you want to because your generous and want to offer an extra perk).

jura Mon 07-Mar-05 17:43:05

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

beachyhead Mon 07-Mar-05 17:45:33

I think, if you wanted to give her an extra perk, you could buy her a weekly ticket....(along with an a to Z). But it is not necessary for her job.....

Ameriscot2005 Mon 07-Mar-05 17:54:24

No, you don't have to pay her travel costs.

uwila Mon 07-Mar-05 18:48:02

Hmmm... I'm not sure. I too have ventured down the nanny route. But, I think that au pairs are regarded as employees as well. I doubt that the Inland Revenue would be happy to consider them your new adopted child. However, mosy au pairs' pocket money doesn't amount to much in terms of tax obligations. If I take an English girl into my home and pay her £50/week for doing anything, I think I have employer responsibilities... I'm not totally sure about this though.

Someone with au pairs, can you advise? Ameriscot, what's the legal position? Anyone else?

Ameriscot2005 Mon 07-Mar-05 18:52:44

I think au pairs are officially below the NI threshhold (£79/week) and therefore exempt from taxes.

There has never been any obligation to have a formal employer/employee relationship for traditional au pairs (pre- free movement of labour), but I don't think anything much has changed. Things will, I assume, be different if you go outside the 17-27 unmarried person, 25 hours per week rule.

uwila Mon 07-Mar-05 19:06:08

So, if I had say a live-out au pair, I could just pay her in cash? So, I could hire someone from down the street to come do my cleaning and call her my live-out au pair?

Now, I'm sure people do this. But is it legal?

Ameriscot2005 Mon 07-Mar-05 19:19:25

Someone living down the street from you wouldn't qualify as an au pair

Ameriscot2005 Mon 07-Mar-05 19:30:28

As to the grey economy, I imagine many cleaner operate in this zone. However, they would be classed as self-employed if they ever did raise their heads above the parapet, and so would be completely responsible for their own tax and NI.

If you have exclusive use of your cleaner and are very specific about her work regime, then she'd be an employee and you would be responsible for PAYE and employer's NI contributions.

It would be different if she could fit the broad definition of au pair.

You have to lose your American mindset, Uwila. British culture is far more about the intent of the law than the letter of the law. You know if you have an bona fide au pair or not...

uwila Mon 07-Mar-05 21:09:29

With all due respect Ameriscot, I don't need (or want) to lose my American anything.

I'm just playing devils advocate, and I'm sure that businessmen/women do the same over here.

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