Why do I need a contract when I hire a nanny?
You were working before your nine months pregnancy. Now that your baby is a few months old, you have to return to your work. You must leave the child with a nanny offering specialized care when you are not around. The nanny would take care of him five days a week and babysit for eight to ten hours daily.
Importance of signing a contract with the nanny
By signing a contract, both parties - that is, you and the nanny would set expectations and ground rules regarding the arrangements from the first day. If there is any dispute, you can refer to the terms and agreement in the contract and solve the problem.
Important questions to ask the nanny's before signing the agreement
The nanny must be qualified and have a few years of experience before you allow your child under her care. It is best to check a few details first -
It is essential that your child's nanny should be registered.
She should have few years of experience as a nanny or she should have brought up kids of her dear ones.
Has your nanny received any specialized course on child care?
What is her health history and what immunizations has she taken in the last one year.
Taking care of young child is very hectic and strenuous. Does her current health condition permit her to sit for long hours?
Why is she working and looking after kids?
Question her on how she will take care of your child when you are gone? You can help her by giving certain instructions that she needs to follow with your kid in your absence.
What is the age group she is comfortable with and what are the reasons behind it?
Does your nanny understand the basic hygienic standard she must maintain with your child?
In case of a medical emergency with your child, is your nanny equipped to give your child the necessary medication and call the doctor for help?
How would the nanny tackle a difficult child? How would she help your child when he is missing you and win his affection?
Under what situations would she contact you? Here you can help her with the guidelines.
These queries might seem simple, but in the long run you know what you can expect from a nanny once you hire her and vice versa.
Elements to be covered in the contract
Your nanny's contract should cover all details pertaining to the facilities given by you, the payment, and such others. The contract should cover the following:
The hourly payment rate.
The nanny's payment pattern whether it would weekly or monthly in nature.
Working schedule, outlining the basic daily hours and the number of days she must babysit.
If she is eligible for your paid vacations.
What are the benefits that she receives from your end when she is sick?
What are the specific duties that she would be undertaking for your child? This would also carry your personal preferences in mind.
Nature of her overtime payment.
If your child needs to go for his evening outings than you should pay the necessary travel cost.
If she faces a family emergency and you are not available, then your child would be kept under whose care?
How to design the agreement?
You can design the agreement and make it simple and professional. You can also research online and take help from such other agreements and fine tune it to your needs. Keep these important things in mind while designing your nanny's contract -
Make two copies of your nanny's contact. Give one to your nanny and receive the other with your nanny's signature.
The agreement should be signed on the same day.
In case you make any changes in the agreement, incorporate these into the agreement and again issue a fresh copy for both of you. This would help both of you in the long run in case a dispute arises.
In case you want to review the contract on a particular day. You can do it when the time comes and check the feasibility in real time.
In case you want to redo your nanny's agreement in case there are changes in your household like your mother has come to stay with you and she can help with your child. The nannies working hours and responsibilities would be reduced therefore; the agreement needs to be changed.
How can you make your nanny's contract binding?
Any agreement is very hard to implement. But you can create conditions that would bring about a healthy relationship, and your child's need is taken care of.
It is important to have realistic expectations from your nanny and give her some time to settle with your kid. Do not be hyper and give her space to build a relationship with your child that would be beneficial for the three of you in the coming days.