Categories
For Nannies

Hiring a Nanny? How to legally pay a nanny in Canada

When you hire a nanny in Canada, you become their employer and that is a huge responsibility with a steep learning curve. Employees are dependent on their employers to be able to pay their bills and put food on the table for their family, as well as to have future pensions, E.I., apply for loans, etc. As such, it is crucial that you understand your responsibility as an employer. The information below is very general. Please refer to the Employment Standards in your province to get the most recent information.

Payslips, pay frequency, deductions

You must provide set pay periods, wage statements, and withhold and remit deductions to Revenue Canada. The most common pay periods bare every 2nd Friday, or the 15th and last day of the month). We recommend hiring a payroll company; they are the experts in the field and can save you a lot of time, stress, and money.

Vacation pay

Nannies accrue vacation pay and are entitled to paid time off. It does not matter if they are short-term or permanent, full-time or part-time.

Sick days

As an employer, you will absolutely have to deal with a sick nanny at some point. Try to be as understanding and accommodating as possible, and have a plan B for childcare in mind.

Statutory holidays

Nannies may or may not be entitled to have a paid day off on statutory holidays. This is dependent on the rules laid out by Employment Standards in your province.

Overtime

Overtime rates may apply, dependent on your provincial employment rules. It may be a daily overtime rate or a weekly overtime rate.

Quitting or letting your nanny go

Employees can quit their job at any time. Giving notice is the norm but it is not a requirement. You, as the employer, can terminate the nanny’s employment; however, you must provide them with the required notice or pay in lieu of notice.

When employment ends

Regardless of whether the employee quit or is let go, the employer must pay their outstanding wages, including any outstanding vacation pay within a specific time period. No other deductions can be taken off the paycheque (i.e. you can’t deduct pay because too much vacation was taken). A record of employment (ROE) must be issued once employment has ended and filed with Service Canada. It must be issued within a specific number of days.

Tax statements

As the employer, you must issue the nanny a T4 slip before the tax deadline each year.

Employment Standards in each province have call centres and very informative websites.

Websites:
Employment Standards of Ontario
Employment Standards of Alberta
Employment Standards of BC
Service Canada

The key points above are not simply recommendations. The Canada Revenue Agency requires you to hire your nanny as an employee. Paying under the table is illegal and hiring as a contractor is not permitted. We advise all families who are in the process of hiring a nanny to familiarize themselves with the Employment Standards in their province and have a thorough understanding of the responsibilities that come along with being an employer.

Interested in finding a nanny with The Nanny Solution? Start Here

Categories
For Parents

Do I have to give my nanny vacation time?

There are many questions surrounding employing a nanny and vacation allowance.  Kate McGeachin, a Placement Manager at Nannies on Call answers 5 of the most commonly asked questions.

Do I have to allow my nanny to take vacation?

Yes.  Nannies have the same rights as employees in any other industry. Employees are entitled to a minimum of 4% vacation per year (4% is the equivalent to 2 weeks vacation). Most Nannies get anywhere from 2 – 6 weeks paid vacation. 

If my Nanny only works part time, is she entitled to vacation?

As employees, Nannies are entitled to paid vacation whether or not they are full time or part time employees and whether or not they are permanent or temporary.  They are entitled to a minimum of 4% of their gross earnings for the year which is the equivalent to 2 weeks.  

If your Nanny works for you 3 days per week, in this case one week is the equivalent to 3 days (not 5) and therefore your Nanny can take a minimum of 6 days of paid vacation per year (not 10).

Our family is going away for 3 weeks over the summer and 2 weeks at Christmas and we won’t need the Nanny to work.  Do we have to pay our nanny for this time?

Employment Standards does not require you to pay her for hours not worked, but we strongly recommend that you do.  This is the number one complaint we hear from our Nannies.  If the Nanny is willing and able to work, and you can not provide her with work, we feel that she should be paid.  The Nannies rely on a steady income and if they are scrounging to make ends meet at the end of the month, they will be forced to quit and seek a new job that can guarantee a steady paycheque.

Can I decide when my nanny takes her vacation? 

Employers are able to dictate when an employee takes vacation.   However, please remember that things come up in the Nanny’s personal life that are very important to her. You will have a very unhappy Nanny on your hands if she has to miss out on her best friend’s wedding or a family reunion.  As much as possible, allow her to choose her vacation.  If not, you can ask her to take these days as unpaid if you have allotted other times in the year for her vacation. 

My Nanny has asked to take vacation but she has only just started working with us.  What should I do?

If your Nanny has been employed for a short time, she wouldn’t have worked long enough to accrue enough days to cover the amount of days she would like off.  We don’t recommend giving her an advance for her vacation pay.  If she quits or is let go, and if she hasn’t worked long enough to repay her vacation, you are not allowed to deduct it from her final pay. You could either tell her that she isn’t able to take vacation until she has accrued it, or allow her to take as unpaid leave.  

If she has accrued it, we feel that she should be entitled to take it. 

Kate McGeachin has been matching nannies and families for 8 years.  She lives in Vancouver with her husband and her daughter.  When she is not camping, skiing or biking, she is scouring the internet looking for the latest vegetarian gluten free recipes. 

 

 

Categories
COVID For Parents

The Rising Demand for Nannies During the Pandemic

When the COVID-19 pandemic hit in early 2020, parents had to scramble to find childcare as daycares, preschools, and elementary schools closed their doors. As a result, the demand for Full Time Nannies increased drastically. At the same time, families with existing Nannies extended their contracts in order to secure long-term childcare, which in turn, slowed down the usual Nanny turnover rate, making available Nannies even more scarce. These factors are how the Nanny labour shortage began, so what’s been keeping it going over a year and a half later? Where are all the Nannies and what does the labour shortage mean for your family?

There are a number of reasons why families are still struggling to find a Nanny to care for their little ones. A few that we’ve encountered here at The Nanny Solution are: 

  • Many families acted quickly and either hired a Nanny at the onset of the pandemic or retained their existing Nanny. This took many professional childcare providers off the market early on.
  • Some former Nannies have made the decision to transition out of working in childcare during the pandemic, out of concern for both their own health and safety and their loved ones’. 
  • There are currently fewer Nannies available to work, as many of the Nannies in Canada are/were only here on two-year work visas. 
  • The majority of families only want to hire a Nanny that has been fully vaccinated, and unfortunately, not all Nannies are vaccinated. 

The demand for qualified, professional, fully-vaccinated Nannies is exceptionally high, while the supply is lower than ever. So, what does that mean for your Nanny search?

  • Expect to pay a higher wage. Nanny wages have soared as a result of the pandemic labour shortage, and we are seeing rates of $25 to $40 per hour across Canada.
  • Nannies may require medical benefits and/or additional paid sick days in their contracts. You can also expect to see a COVID-19 clause in the contract.
  • Nannies’ roles have changed over the past couple of years, as parents have transitioned to working from home and many children are attending school from home as well. These changes require increased communication, flexibility, and boundaries, as well as appropriate compensation. 

All that being said, if you’re just beginning your Nanny search, or if you’re coming to the end of your contract and trying to decide whether to hire a new Nanny or not, don’t get discouraged! There are still wonderful Nannies out there who are looking for work. It may take a little extra patience to find the right one for your family, but the peace of mind that comes with having safe, reliable, professional childcare is well worth it! 

Start your search today!

Categories
For Parents

3 Things You Need Before Hiring a Nanny

 

Choosing to hire a nanny in Canada is one of the most important decisions families make.⁠ 

Whether you choose to do your own nanny search or work with a nanny agency, there are 3 things you must do and know before you start this process.⁠

In our experience, ignoring these 3 things typically results in a lot of wasted time and frustration for both parents and nanny candidates.⁠

Know Exactly What You Need

Hiring a nanny means hiring someone who has a specific set of skills and experience.

As a parent, you need to be clear on which skills & experience you need your potential nanny to have, focusing and prioritizing your “must-haves” over your “nice-to-haves”, before you begin your nanny search.

When you know exactly what you want it will be easier to identify which nanny candidates are potential good matches and which ones aren’t.

If you’re working with an agency, it will be a lot easier for them to find ideal matches for you, or to let you know if what you’re looking for in a nanny is unrealistic so that you don’t waste your time.

And speaking of time…

Invest Time In Your Nanny Search

Hiring a nanny, or any employee for that matter, is a process that takes time.

Make sure that you actually have the time and make the time to invest in your nanny search, whether you’re doing it on your own or working with a nanny agency.

With an agency, you will need time to fill out a family questionnaire where you’ll share information about your family and your specific needs. You’ll need to speak with the agency directly to learn about the hiring process, including your responsibilities as an employer.

You’ll need to make time to go over nanny resumes, to interview potential candidates, and to give the agency feedback after each interview.

You may need to make time to have trial workdates with potential nannies and give feedback about your experience with each.

You may need to make time to re-evaluate your needs and start the process again.

Sometimes you get lucky and find your perfect nanny match quickly. Other times it takes a bit longer.

Prioritize Communication

⁠If you’re hiring a nanny on your own, be clear on your needs and expectations with potential nanny candidates.

If you’re working with a nanny agency, be honest about your family’s needs and expectations. Is your child anxious, or a picky eater? Do they have any special needs or require any type of special support? 

Remember: Nanny agencies work hard to make the best nanny-family matches based on the information they receive from both families and nannies. Share any questions or concerns you may have in a timely manner and trust the advice you receive from them. They absolutely want you to succeed in your search.

As an agency, our goal is to help you make the right childcare decisions for your family and if you choose to work with us to help you find your ideal nanny, we want the experience to be positive and successful.

To learn more about how we can help you in your nanny search, start here.