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How to share a nanny

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Sharing a nanny with another family is increasingly popular and, if it’s done right, it can not only save money on childcare but also guarantee flexible childcare in your or your nanny share partner's home. A nannyshare is where the nanny works for more than one family; in effect she has more than one part-time job. Several nanny agencies offer this option, but how do you begin? Here are some tips.
Register with a nannying agency. They may pair you with someone who wants a nanny share or if you have a friend who wants to share with you you could register together. Some agencies specialise in nanny shares.
Once you have found a nanny, agree a gross salary. For tax reasons agreeing a net salary is like signing a blank cheque.
Both families should register separately as employers. Although it is possible to register jointly and you may think it’s a good idea if the families are good friends, it’s more cost-effective to register separately due to reduced NI contributions. Plus if your circumstances change and the nannyshare dissolves, one family could end up having to cover all costs if you are registered jointly.
Once you have registered with HMRC you can then arrange to split the nanny’s tax code with the other family. Tax code splits are unique to the world of nanny employment, and although it requires the involvement of HMRC, the consent of the nanny and the cooperation of the other family, they are usually the best solution. To split the tax code your nanny must send a letter, signed by all parties, to the local tax office and apply for the tax code to be split proportionately. It can take several weeks to arrange a tax code split, and they cannot be applied retrospectively.
You should also ensure that both families have separate contracts of employment in place with the nanny.
If you know the other family and the nanny is going to care for all children at the same time, it’s also a good idea to sit down and sort out things like holiday arrangements. The nanny is entitled to four weeks holiday a year, plus at least four of the bank holidays. When these should be taken is up to the employer, but when there are two sets of employers this can sometimes lead to conflict, so it's best to sort this out sooner rather than later.
Finally, you must also make sure that you both pay the nanny above the National Minimum Wage.
Good luck!


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