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Would you pay a nanny cash in hand?

(31 Posts)
Crumblemum Thu 04-Apr-13 09:20:20

Hi there. Just returning to work after mat leave and looking for a new nanny. Due to meet one tomorrow who sounded great over the phone. When I asked about rates she suggested she was happy with cash in hand. We've always paid tax and NI etc, but paying cash in hand would obviously massively help us bills wise, but I'm a bit worried. Firstly for the nanny themselves - isn't it better for them to have NI contributions and secondly that we could get into trouble? Am I overthinking or should we be by the book?

MrAnchovy Thu 04-Apr-13 09:33:40

Some people are desparate for work, that doesn't mean that it is OK to exploit them. Or to break the law.

bunnymother Thu 04-Apr-13 09:37:46

If you get caught, you will be paying both the tax/NI and a fine. Nannies have been known to start by being OK with no tax being paid (expecting a higher £ per hour, than if their tax was being paid, in most cases) and then change their mind when they understand the implications of no tax history. I have seen it get ugly, to be honest.

dinkystinky Thu 04-Apr-13 09:38:57

Erm, no - its breaking the law. I know people do so but really I would advise strongly against it. It is best for you and the nanny to do everything by the book - employment contract, payslips, operate PAYE and NICs etc.

forevergreek Thu 04-Apr-13 10:38:36

Terrible idea. You could land yourself with a huge fine as well as it being completely wrong ( I know someone who ended up with a £12k fine and fees)

minderjinx Thu 04-Apr-13 10:41:11

Why would you want a dishonest nanny?

Crumblemum Thu 04-Apr-13 11:02:25

Thanks everyone for the advice. We're basically the type of people that do do things by the book - so that seems natural.

confusedalways Thu 04-Apr-13 12:21:54

My employers pay me cash in hand. I genuinely didn't know there was anything wrong with this when I took the job as it was my first but they clearly did know. I was rather disappointed with them when I found out and will be moving on at the end of my contract to a more honest family. Please don't do this.

Blondeshavemorefun Thu 04-Apr-13 13:10:39

Assume if you pay her cih then she would expect more money rather then a set nett wage - you can hardly gross it up if not paying tax

Stay away from this nanny and others who suggest the same thing

You the employer will be in trouble. Not the nanny

£3k fine as bare minimum and possibly prison at the extreme

abbyfromoz Thu 04-Apr-13 13:18:21

A babysitter- yes
A nanny- no

Seb101 Thu 04-Apr-13 15:09:27

I'd maybe do it if it was very short term, but if permanent, then no.

Karoleann Thu 04-Apr-13 19:43:36

We first hired a nanny back in 2006, when most people in london were paying CIH. We spoke to someone who had fired their nanny for drinking on duty and she had subsequently reported them to HMRC for non-payment of tax.
She was quite careful about it as the payment of tax is a joint responsibility of the employee and employer and if the nanny was aware that tax and NI wasn't being paid she would also be responsible.
Its really not worth it.

ReetPetit Thu 04-Apr-13 20:10:32

No, don't do this. If she wants cash in hand she could even be committing benefit fraud. I would not want to be associated with that, you could find yourself in all sorts of trouble...

LynetteScavo Thu 04-Apr-13 20:13:36

No, she is probably saying she will take cash in hand to be a more attractive candidate. I know a nanny who agreed to part cash in hand because she wanted the job....then became pg, and could only claim maternity pay on what had gone through the accountant, not the cash in hand. It was a live and learn experience for her.

MrAnchovy Thu 04-Apr-13 20:14:53

"... payment of tax is a joint responsibility of the employee and employer and if the nanny was aware that tax and NI wasn't being paid she would also be responsible"

This is not correct. Employment income is taxed under PAYE which is solely the responsibility of the employer.

MrAnchovy Thu 04-Apr-13 20:23:30

"I know a nanny who agreed to part cash in hand because she wanted the job....then became pg, and could only claim maternity pay on what had gone through the accountant, not the cash in hand."

This is incorrect, you are entitled to Statutory Maternity Pay on your total income before deduction of Tax and NI during the Relevant Period. This is true whether or not your Employer has correctly declared all or any of your income through PAYE.

Of course if an employer has bullied you into accepting CiH for part of your income they may well bully you into accepting less SMP than you are entitled to as well, and bully you into believing that you can get into trouble if you tell anyone about it - that's how abuse works.

LynetteScavo Thu 04-Apr-13 20:57:03

MrAnchovy she felt lucky to come away with any SMP.

I imagine trying to prove what you actually salary was would be a nightmare - especially if you've signed a contract which says you are going to be paid X amount, but are then given more cash in hand. Live in nannies aren't subject to minimum wage, so what is on the contract may have been very low.

Everybody should always do things by the book. It's so much easier in the long run, although 18yo's don't always realise this.

Karoleann Thu 04-Apr-13 21:01:03

Mr anchovy you are not right, if someone is a willing party to tax evasion then they are acting illegally.
I think we have had this discussion before.

NotSpartacus Thu 04-Apr-13 21:05:42

Clearly it is not a good thing.
But op, an awful lot of people do it. I often suspect I am the only nanny employer who does operate PAYE. Two of the nannies we have had - on being given their net pay in cash (so they didnt have to wait for it to clear) asked me whether it was ok to bank it. Previous employers must have asked them to keep it under their mattress so there was no paper trail!

Blondeshavemorefun Thu 04-Apr-13 21:50:38

Paying cash every week or month must be a pain. Why not pay direct into their account then no need to clear

NotSpartacus Thu 04-Apr-13 21:59:01

Oh blondes, it was when the nanny's account was with a different bank and she wanted her money on friday rather than Tues - a standing order would not clear for a few days. Going to the bank is a massive hassle in a very busy day (queues etc) compared to going to the cashpoint in my office and handing over a wad of notes.

Blondeshavemorefun Fri 05-Apr-13 00:17:22

You are a nicer employer then most

Sure many wouldnt get out wads of cash and unless she signed something every week then you have no proof you paid her every week

Why didn't you send from your account tue/wed so would clear in her account Friday

Though tbh if you had paid her Friday and then cleared over the weekend then she would of had money the following week for the weekend

Ie would have been the same every week - as in would always get paid weekly just beginning of week after

I know what I mean but never comes out I mean - esp after the bewitching hour

Must go to bed lol

Callthemidlife Fri 05-Apr-13 08:42:22

Please forgive shameless barging in on thread, but v quick qn for mr anchovy...

Nanny has always had STO weekly into bank account. Will obv have to switch to monthly pmt to deal with ridiculous PAYE changes. BUT... Can I switch to officially paying her mthly in arrears and 'lending' nanny the same money via STO every week, and then deducting the prepayments from her mthly salary. Ie changing the payslips and recording mthly but continuing with weekly cash flow? IYSWIM?

MrAnchovy Fri 05-Apr-13 11:23:46

No I'm afraid you can't do that Callthemidlife, PAYE must be accounted for on the date the payment is made. There is a concession for small businesses operating until 5 October 2013 which means you don't have to report until the end of the PAYE month, but depending on what software you are using it may not be possible to do this.

I'd suggest you either change the contract with your nanny to pay monthly or bite the bullet and process payroll weekly either using an agency (probably cheaper than you expect) or some sensible payroll software.

If cash flow is a problem, one way to ease the transition is to pay in the middle of the month for say 3 months (so 2 weeks in advance) before moving to the end of the month. Any changes should be discussed with the employee; you do not have to pay them compensation but it is often a good idea to time a change like this with a pay rise if one is due.

MrAnchovy Fri 05-Apr-13 11:32:03

"Mr anchovy you are not right, if someone is a willing party to tax evasion then they are acting illegally.
I think we have had this discussion before."

We have and I don't want to waste everyone's time again as it is completely irrelevant - HMRC will not persue a nanny for PAYE that is not paid by his or her employer.

In any case that's not what you said - you said "payment of tax is a joint responsibility of the employee and employer" which is completely untrue.

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