I've just been asked about holidays by an au pair applicant. I'd like to know what the law says and also whether you pay your au pairs holidays?
Bestbear.co.uk says "Au pairs tend to stay for six months and this usually means the employer does not give them a paid holiday - the rationale being that the au pair only worked part time. However, if the au pair stays here for longer there is a case for the employer to give them paid and perhaps some unpaid holiday. "
I know there was recent discussion about what the legal requirements are (e,g, 28 days/ year or pro-rated) but I can't find any or even any guidelines under the Home Office (Border Agency).
Can anyone point me to where these legal requirements are on a .gov site?
I am not sure about the legal requirement if there is one as I think the employment status of au pairs is debatable. However I give mine fully paid 2 weeks (ie 10 working days) per 6 months plus all bank holidays that occur within that time period.
We are giving our AP about 5 weeks fixed and then around another 5 days that she can choose when mutually convenient - I will be doing a PGCE so need the extra help in term times, but less help in the holidays. She will be with us Aug-July. We will give her the option of taking the extra days at the end of her contract if she wants to stay on for a week to sightsee etc.
Au pairs are considered as employees by the European court. Don't know how to link from my iPhone but will post the judgement from a computer later. It is on here though, somewhere.
Generally they would be entitled to 5.6 weeks holiday, including bank holidays, a notice period, a disciplinary procedure - there is a very helpful .gov link which talks about domestic employees which again I will post when I get to a computer....
Au pairs are employees there is case law to back this up that is linked on another thread discussing this. Bestbear.co.uk is wrong.
As employees they are entitled to 28 days holiday (nick's 5.6 weeks) per year pro-rated for shorter contracts. 28 days includes bank holidays, so if they do not work bank holidays that is your first 8 days of holidays in the year.
So somebody on a six month contract would be entitled to 14 days holiday, any holiday entitlement not utilised during the contract should be paid at the end of the contract.
As an employer you are entitled to dictate when the employee takes holiday.
dreamteamgirl - you as the employer can decide that Bank/Public Holidays are part of the entitlement. Those days combined with the 4 weeks you are giving will get you very close to the 5.6 weeks entitlement. This is assuming the au-pair is working Mon-Fri. You au-pair may well ask for a day or a few days off in addition - so if you decide to allow those days, then you will be over the Minimum Entitlement.
Direct.gov.uk : Time Off and Holidays is useful to read as a basic guide to calculating holiday entitlement. It also has a formula to help with working out an accumulation system, if you wanted the au-pair to build up holiday entitlement over a period of time. The ACAS Guide to Holidays also contains more info about accrual systems.
And I don't think you'll find a .gov site that says 'you must treat an au pair as an employee as regards to holiday etc' but you are also unlikely to find a .gov site which says 'an au pair is Not an employee'.
Thabnsk Nick and DIOM, I think i need tog ive the agency I recruited through a call to clarify excactly what I should do interms of notice etc- after all this must be part of what I am paying them for!!
Thank you ever so much for all the advice tho- I so want to get this right and be fair to both of us
I phoned my agency this week, and asked 'out of interest' and was told that it might be nice to offer her 2 weeks if she was staying for a year, but that I was under no obligation to. Now assuming the au pair has been told same- she is going to be chuffed isnt she?
HERE IS THE LEGAL POSITION. Copied and pasted from a post I did a while back...
I was 100% under the impression that au pairs were not defined as workers under employment law, and indeed this was the case until January 24th of last year, when European Court of Justice over-ruled the UK Secretary of State on precisely this point.
The position now is that National Minumum Wage and Working hours directive continue to exclude au pairs from legislation (under specific exemptions given for people who work in the home as part of the family), but that all other aspects of employee legislation do apply (including paid holiday). Even though Sec of State thought they didn't (so at least I was in good company)
For those who get excited by these things (ie me: sad, I know) here is the legal summary of the ruling.
THey are not entitled to Statutory Sick Pay (unless they earn more then £95 per week and the employer has fulfilled their legal obligation to register as an employer with HMRC) what you chose to pay in terms of sick pay is down to contractural agreement.
I have a list of examples of gross misconduct instant dismissal matters (a combination of various peoples suggestions on here - thank you) and an agreement to talk about all other issues.