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Advice for Employees

As an employee, you are entitled to a contract from your employer spelling out the terms and conditions of your employment.

It is also your right to receive regular payslips showing all the tax and National Insurance deductions your employer has paid on your behalf.

It is your employer's responsibility to register with the Inland Revenue and deduct tax and National Insurance contributions from your gross wage. The deductions must be paid to the Inland Revenue quarterly, along with an additional employer's NI contribution.

Your employer has to provide you with payslips (weekly or monthly, depending on how you are paid) showing any tax and National Insurance deductions taken from your 'gross' wage. The amount you actually receive 'in your hand' is called your 'net' wage. You should always agree a gross wage, as this is what you are actually paid. It is also in your advantage to receive the increase in tax allowances that the government regularly makes. If you have any time off in between jobs, you may be due a tax rebate. If you have agreed a net wage, it is your employer that will benefit from this. Agreeing a gross salary means that you can compare and contrast your income with that of people in other types of employment and make informed decisions.

Your employer must also provide you a P60 summarising your annual earnings and total tax and NI deductions. You should receive this form annually, after 5th April. If your employer does not wish to pay tax or asks you to be self-employed, you should refuse and insist that it is their responsibility.

Once your wages and conditions have been agreed, a contract should be drawn up before you start work.
If this is not possible, insist on an immediate letter of appointment from your employer and ensure that a full contract (including terms and conditions) is provided within 13 weeks of starting work. This document should clearly spell out your agreed salary (specifying whether net or gross) and your employers' acceptance of their responsibility to pay tax and NI contributions to the Inland Revenue on your behalf.

If your employer fails to meet their responsibilities, this contract will be your greatest protection.
A standard contract for nanny employment, widely used by nanny agencies, will give you and your employer an idea of the issues and details that should be included in a contract.

If you are not sure whether your employer is paying your tax and NI, make some enquiries. Ask your employer to confirm that these issues are being dealt with and request details of their tax office and (unique) PAYE scheme number (remember that if your are the first nanny your employer has had, it may take some time for the PAYE scheme to be set up).

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