Info on employing good, reliable and qualified carers

Hi

I'm trying to help my cousin find private carers for his parents in the London Shepherds Bush/Hammersmith/Fulham area. He is currently using agency staff but finding the commission fees charged by the agency exhorbitant and would rather pay the carer an adequate pay - he would want to employ on a self-employed basis.

Any advice would be gratefully received.

Thank you,

Kat x

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4 Replies

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  • I would speak to the adult social care team for your council. They should be able to provide a list of private care givers in the local area and organise an assessment to see if he is entitled to attendance allowance.

  • Are his parents claiming attendance allowance? They have to be getting that first for any carer to then claim carers allowance, good luck

  • Hello Kat

    Employing independent carers can give you more freedom and as you say you are able to pay carers directly. However your cousin does need to be aware of employment regulations when going down route.

    I suggest your cousin talks to the local authority, they may well have a list of recognised independent carers and also point you in the right direction to talk to someone about employment checks and things that need to be in place. They have this service in place for people who have direct payments and able to offer payroll services also. Sometimes this is outsourced so you should be able to access it to.

    Things to consider:

    It is important to be clear he is employing on a self employed basis. If unsure, you can refer to the HMRC website where there is an employment status indicator tool.

    If self employed, ensure you have sight of their self employment details / certificate. This is to be clear about who is paying tax and National insurance

    It is good practice to inform your own household insurance company you have carers within the house. This is something that can be forgotten at times and worth having a conversation with your own company. This should be the case even with engaging care agencies

    Check the carers insurance, they should have public liability insurance in place if working on a self employed basis.

    Finding self employed carers can be a challenge. Ask your local GP or District Nurse if they know of any independent carers. Often, these carers don't advertise but GP's and Nurses know of them. Also talk to local carer groups.

    I suggest writing a bullet pointed job description so you are clear on what you are looking for and the skill set you require. This way, when asking around you know what you want.

    Ensure you have replacement cover in place, all carers need to take breaks, holidays and have time off when sick. Depending on the level of care, think about two or three carers working a rota. Once you have found one it is most likely they will have a friend working in the same way.

    I hope this helps, but most importantly, make sure all checks are carried out and references followed up, not just in writing but over the phone if possible. Plus carry out a new DBS check.

    Good luck

  • Thank you all so much for your advice which I shall pass on to my cousin. It is really very much appreciated :-) x

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