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Common nanny pay issues

2015 March 20

When parents employ a nanny it’s often the first time they have need to administer a payroll and pay regularly for services. In all the confusion it can be easy to let some things slip through the cracks, like transferring the money on the right date…

Problem #1 My boss never pays me on time

This is more common than you’d think. Many nannies report late payments from their employers, or having to leave messages to make sure they’re paid on time. It has a knock on effect on nanny’s bank balance and they may incur charges if their direct debits go out without sufficient funds. Solution? Set up a standing order when the job starts.

Problem #2 The amount in my account and on my payslip don’t match up

First you need to make sure you’re looking at your payslip correctly. The figure that should be in your account is in the bottom right, not the top right. The top right is the gross figure that you should have agreed at interview and written in your contract. The bottom figure is the net amount, which is what ends up in your account. If that net amount on your payslip doesn’t match what’s in your account then your boss has either over or under paid you, and you need to find out why. Sometimes this is because overtime has been added to your pay but not processed through payroll, or because you’ve had time off sick but it’s not been processed through payroll. Sometimes it’s because you agreed a net wage which is very difficult to match up on a payroll run each month even if your boss has paid what you agreed. Solution? Check your payslip, your contract and your working hours. There will be a discrepancy in the figures somewhere and when you find out what it is you can sort it.

Problem #3  My overtime hasn’t been counted

If you do overtime late in the month it can be tough for employers to get that information to the nanny payroll company on time, or they may have forgotten to add it to the payslip. The other, more alarming, situation is where your overtime appears on your payslip but not in your account. This probably means your employers have a standing order, notified the payroll company and forgot to manually transfer you the overtime payment. Solution? Gently remind them to declare your overtime and/or pay you.

Problem#4 My boss is making extra deductions

The standard deductions that should be made from your pay are tax and employee national insurance contributions. You may also have deductions for your pension and student loan repayments. Your contract may specific additional situations where your employer can take money out of your pay, for example if you are responsible for damaging their car they may deduct the insurance excess directly from your pay. If you see extra deductions, or you think other things have been deducted from your pay check your contract to see whether it’s allowed. Solution? Call the payroll company to check what’s being taken off and talk to your boss.

Problem #5 My boss never reimburses my expenses

Many nanny employers provide a kitty which means their nanny doesn’t have to pay for activities and so on out of their own pocket, but some prefer to reimburse expenses. Mileage is an expense which is commonly reimbursed, rather than taken out of the kitty. Paying up front can leave you short of cash at the end of the month, and if your boss doesn’t pay you back you’re effectively subsidising your charges. Solution? Stop paying out. Insist on having a kitty or only do free activities within walking distance.

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