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please help me - car problem

(16 Posts)
nannyneedshelp Wed 04-Nov-09 18:42:56

Hi I have joined here as I could really do with some help and advice about my rights.

I am a self employed nanny, working for different families. My problem is about one family I worked for 6 hours a week, with no written contract.

As part of my job I use my own car to transport the children I look after. Recently the 5 year old child flipped the handle to slide the passenger seat forwards, didnt do it to the full extent, and then shoved the seat forwards causing the movement mechanism to break. This was while I was on duty, I had picked him up from school.

I feel it is reasonable to expect the family to pay the costs of repairs, since their child did it. They will not pay, they do not feel they owe me any money and have said they will pay £50 towards it, I am expecting costs to be £200 ish.

I find it disgusting to be honest how they have no morals and manners. In the light of this i have said I am not prepared to transport their children in my car. Same as quitting, but not.

Everyone I have spoken to agrees with me. Does anybody know legally what is right?

thank you

Fabster Wed 04-Nov-09 18:45:05

You are crazy to work without a contract tbh and if they won't pay I would leave.

Legality doesn't come in to it when you have no contract but morality does.

BradfordMum Wed 04-Nov-09 21:02:59

Car problem aside, have you spoken to them about a contract? Have they refused to do one, if so I would look elsewhere. Do you Think that it's not worth it for 6 hours, in which case you are SO wrong!

Car problem - was the child being properly supervised when this happened, after all, he/she is only 5 yrs old.

I think expecting the parents to pay is wrong.
If you use your car, you have to pay for damages.

JMI

nannyneedshelp Wed 04-Nov-09 21:17:54

hi thanks for responses so far.

Yes the child was being properly supervised, he had seen me flip the seat and had done it a few times before - there was not time for me to say please dont do that you havent lifted the handle properly before he shoved it.

I guess we didnt feel the need for a written contract since I knew them before I worked for them. Yes I was wrong. I know I now need one.

I think morally, if you break something, you offer to pay for the damages. same if it is your child. I would and have when I accidently broke something when I was babysitting a different family. Its only polite.

StillSquiffy Thu 05-Nov-09 07:47:29

Morals don't come into it - it is a business. Or rather, morally you were in the wrong for asking the parents to cough up, and for refusing to fulfill the verbal contract that you made with them when they refused (if you agreed to transport their kids you are in breach of contract now, because verbal agreements are still valid, even if not written down)

It is your fault that you do not have a contract covering damage, and your fault that normal wear and tear such as this have not been factored into your costings.

And I am wondering why you never answered the question I posed on your other thread - have you upped your car insurance to cover business use? And have you taken out liability insurance?

Setting up as self employed to run your own business is not something that you can just jump into. there are legal requirements, health and safety requirements, and as you now know, you must plan for all eventualities - you should sit down and consider ALL the things that this entails; there are plenty of government support websites that will give you checklists to get started with.

Blondeshavemorefun Thu 05-Nov-09 10:24:14

if you are a se employed nanny, then very suprised you dont have a contract,as you being se are offering a service

Danthe4th Thu 05-Nov-09 11:38:36

Are you insured to carry the children in your own car? If you do then claim on that if you don't get 2 or 3 proper quotes for the repair, show them to the parent's and see if you could agree a figure.

nannyneedshelp Sat 07-Nov-09 00:25:57

in response to still squiffy, I did not have another thread. and yes I did up my policy when i explained about nannying. you seem very accusatory, I didnt even have another thread

nannyneedshelp Sat 07-Nov-09 02:20:28

if you want to talk about breach of contracts, they verbally agreed to pay it, then over 4 weeks later refused. I continued to work for the 4 weeks under the impression they would pay, and only refused to no longer have the children in my car when they went back on what they had told me.

to dan - if i claim on insurance it will stop my no claims, which is not worth it. but thanks for the advice.

BradfordMum Sat 07-Nov-09 08:36:07

Yes there were definately 2 threads started by the OP!

nannynick Sat 07-Nov-09 09:30:10

The other thread the username is different but the opening post is the same.

It seems to me as though most of us are saying that in the situation as you describe it to us, you are in the wrong to be wanting your client to pay. By posting on here you were asking for our opinions and we gave them. You won't always like our opinions!

Perhaps try posting on NannyJob to see if other nannies share your view, or if they also feel the same was as we do.

nannyneedshelp Sat 07-Nov-09 13:32:08

Hi, thanks for linking me back to that other thread. I did post it, then assumed I had deleted it, since I wanted to change username on it. I had tried searching to also find my original thread and it seemed it was not there any more. So thanks for making me aware where it was, I didnt know there were replies on it!

Also thank you for your replies, I did want opinions and yours are interesting, and I realise these are often parents posting as opposed to nannies.

My problem was that while opinions are useful, it felt like people were questioning whether I was legally insured etc, which I am. I would not do anything to go against legal responsibilities.

Can anyone tell me how they found the other thread when it didnt come up for me? Im new here and not sure where to appeared as I can't see it and assumed it had deleted

frakkinaround Sat 07-Nov-09 14:06:59

It's difficult to give advice on a forum without checking basic things like insurance etc. Because if you weren't insured we could all tell you to claim until we were blue in the face and then if you went to claim and couldn't you wouldn't be very happy!

If you have business insurance on your car you can claim for the damage so it is a necessary question. I think perhaps some people were a little suprised by the lack of contract and tbh if you don't have a contract we don't know what else you don't have.

The other thread is on here in this section. It's probably dropped a bit which may explain why you missed it. It should show up in your 'I started' bit at the top.

nannyneedshelp Sat 07-Nov-09 14:22:10

Thanks for that. The lack of contract was something that had never been an issue before but obviously now I will be doing things differently. Most of the people I have worked for have been people I knew beforehand so this issue of a contract didnt come up.

I dont think it is worth claiming on insurance as then I would lose my no claims bonus.

Thanks for all your opinions, I will make more formal agreements in future regarding employment

nannyneedshelp Sat 07-Nov-09 14:28:36

Thanks for that. The lack of contract was something that had never been an issue before but obviously now I will be doing things differently. Most of the people I have worked for have been people I knew beforehand so this issue of a contract didnt come up.

I dont think it is worth claiming on insurance as then I would lose my no claims bonus.

Thanks for all your opinions, I will make more formal agreements in future regarding employment

still cant see my other post in the list! but thanks for the help

nannynick Sat 07-Nov-09 16:19:26

If you insurance policy is anything like mine (my car is classed as a mini-bus for insurance purposes, as I am paid to transport the children I nanny on top of my salary) the excess alone will probably be more than the amount you would be claiming.

Some people may argue that the insurer should be told about all possible claims but as this is accidental damage to the internal of the vehicle, I wouldn't bother letting the insurer know... regardless of if that is right, or not under policy terms. I feel that it's just too small a thing to worth claiming... like when I knocked my wing mirror off on my then bosses gate... it cost about £150 to replace I think, no damage to the gate, so didn't put in a claim.

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