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When does carer "scattiness" become negligence?

MartinWL

Registered User
Jun 12, 2020
1,451
0
Does hiring a plumber/electrician/gardener count as employing them? I'd have thought they are the same as any other self employed contractor.
One of the key distinctions is about control. You pay a plumber to fix your tap, you do not give him instructions about how to do it and if he decides to send an assistant plumber to stop the drip he can.

If the carer could not send another carer in her place she is more likely to be an employee. That means the employer has to have insurance, a pension scheme and so on and can direct how things are done.

Of course sometimes the line is blurred but that's an outline of the basics.
 

spandit

Registered User
Feb 11, 2020
340
0
One of the key distinctions is about control. You pay a plumber to fix your tap, you do not give him instructions about how to do it and if he decides to send an assistant plumber to stop the drip he can.

If the carer could not send another carer in her place she is more likely to be an employee. That means the employer has to have insurance, a pension scheme and so on and can direct how things are done.

Of course sometimes the line is blurred but that's an outline of the basics.

Using the plumber analogy. I hire a plumber who asks what the problem is. I tell them the tap is dripping and expect them to have the training and knowledge to fix it. I have never known a self-employed plumber send an assistant in, although they may recommend someone else qualified that they know.

A carer I'd expect to be qualified and competent. If they can't come in, because they're ill, I wouldn't expect them to have an assistant carer in their employ to send in their place.

Edit: been reading up and it's certainly not clear but I definitely don't want to be an employer.
 
Last edited:

Shedrech

Volunteer Moderator
Dec 15, 2012
11,304
0
Yorkshire
Hi @spandit
just to say DTP Terms & Rules preclude members from posting in a professional capacity... comments should only come from personal, non-professional knowledge and experience
 

spandit

Registered User
Feb 11, 2020
340
0
Hi @spandit
just to say DTP Terms & Rules preclude members from posting in a professional capacity... comments should only come from personal, non-professional knowledge and experience

Ah, fair enough. Been reading up though and the lines are blurry...
 

jugglingmum

Registered User
Jan 5, 2014
6,104
0
Chester
I agree with @MartinWL that a plumber could send in an assistant. The fact that most don't doesn't mean they couldn't. We use a central heating engineer who has sometimes sent in someone else when he is busy.

Common practice doesn't mean it is correct and legal practice.

When I employed a cleaner I made sure that she met all the rules of self employment, that she could come on the day that suited her, she did swap days, she could come in the hours that suited her, whilst I was at work. She had a general instruction to clean and chose how to do it in what order and which bits to do as 'extras' each week. As far as I know she did normally do the cleaning, but something she said to me once made me think she sometimes brought someone else with her and they split it.

From an insurance perspective I think you'd be wise to follow this up. Even if the carer has their own insurance, the insurance company might refuse to pay out as they deem you to be an employer.
 

MartinWL

Registered User
Jun 12, 2020
1,451
0
To put this very simply an employee is hired personally to work under the instructions of the employer who is entitled to supervise. A contractor is hired to do a job and decides for himself how to do it and who does it. There are grey areas and this is something that has kept employment tribunals busy for years!
 

Frank24

Registered User
Feb 13, 2018
239
0
Employing a home Carer does come with the legal responsibilities of an employer unless you go through an agency that cover this for you. Some agencies act as an introduction agency only so you are still responsible for these costs. Having a private Carer can work well but I would be reluctant to take this on. I employed and external agency who took care of that. Having said that, I also ended up dealing with a lot of things I thought were their domain… ie sorting out employee complaints and holiday requests and travel and all sorts of things. When you have people looking after your loved one at home it puts you into a really strange and difficult relationship. I kept it going too long… and by the time I reached Carer breakdown it was the pandemic time which was a dreadful time as I was told by social services I had no alternative but to keep the arrangement until care homes were safer. By the time my mum could go into a care home she had almost lost her mobility and her ability to follow instructions to sit in a car seat for example. I’ve read your other thread about respite becoming permanent and would advise you all thing last considered to think about this.