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How to hire a personal care assistant

When you make the decision that you would like to have a personal care assistant it can feel quite overwhelming. There are a lot of things to consider and it can seem like too much to cope with. But a personal support worker can help you enjoy your daily life and once the initial protocols have been dealt with, you can relax and enjoy all the benefits. We have composed a comprehensive list of everything you need to consider when employing a personal care assistant and have included all the necessary links that will direct you to the correct governing bodies for more help and information.

What do personal care assistants do?

A personal care assistant can do as much, or as little as you require. For example, you may decide that you just need a bit of help and support with bathing, shopping trips out and preparing meals, or it may be the case that you require more help with all aspects of your personal care and daily living. A personal care assistant will be able to give you as much, or as little support that you require, and can work around your needs and expectations.

Hiring a personal support worker independently

When hiring a personal support worker independently there are some important points you need to be aware of and take into consideration.

  • Advertising and interviewing

    Firstly, you will need to consider how you will advertise for your personal support assistant. There are a few ways to do this such as word of mouth at a day-care centre, placing an advert in local newspapers or online, or using an introductory agency that can put you in touch with prospective carers. Introductory agencies will go through all the applications and forward the ones to you that they think would be a good match. However, you will pay for this service. But you will need to consider what tasks you will expect from your personal care assistant, what hours you will expect them to work, what hourly rate you will pay them and what skills or qualifications you would like them to possess.

    Once you have advertised and you are at the interview stage you should prepare a list of questions to ask and clearly state any ‘house rules’ that will be in place and what notice you will require for holidays or days off. Sorting all of this out at the interview stage will make it easier when it comes to preparing a work contract with your chosen carer.
  • Checking carers eligibility to work in the UK

    During the interview stage, it is important when hiring a personal support worker that you ensure they have the legal right to work and live in the UK. You will need to ask to see certain documents to ascertain the interviewee’s eligibility. For details and help regarding this click here.
  • Certifications and DBS checks

    It is also advisable that you carry out some background checks on your choice of a perspective care worker to make sure they do not have any criminal convictions. You can do this here. If you want to check their qualifications then ask to see the original copies of these too.
  • Registering as an employer

    Now you will need to register as an employer so that you can pay all the necessary wages and contributions. This can be done via clicking here.
  • Drawing up a work contract

    Once you have decided on the person you would like to employ as your personal support assistant and you have registered as an employer the next stage is to draw up a work contract clearly stating everything that you have agreed upon such as pay, work duties, how many hours to be worked, overtime pay, what notice is required for holidays and so forth. It is advisable to employ an employment solicitor to help you with this stage so that you are protected and so is your employee.
  • Paying wages and taxes

    When you are paying wages you will also need to pay certain contributions for your employee. This will all depend on how many hours you are hiring your personal support worker for and what they are earning. Full details of what you can expect to pay can be found on the Government website.
  • Insurance

    As an employer, you are legally bound to take out employers liability insurance and there are certain conditions you have to abide by. It’s important you know what type of insurance you need to get as that will protect you and your employee in the future should there be any problems. Here at Fish Insurance, we offer 3 levels of cover for those employing carers, click here for more information.
  • Pensions

    By law, an employer must give an employee the opportunity of joining a pension scheme if they are earning over a certain amount while working for you. Find out how this works by visiting the pensions guide.
  • Sick pay and holiday pay

    It is important to remember that your employee will be entitled to holiday pay and statutory sick pay. Knowing what you can expect to pay should your employee become sick, or when they take a holiday will ensure you are prepared.

Hiring a personal support worker needn’t be a headache and once you have set everything in place you and your new employee can then relax and look forward to your new working relationship.

For help, speak
to one of our team
call 0333 331 3770

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