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The Advantages Of Having A Formal Work Agreement Between a Nanny And Employer

A formal work agreement between a nanny and an employer may seem trivial to some people. However, it can actually provide a solid foundation for a successful business arrangement. And in certain locations, this written document is actually required.

Here’s a look at some of the reasons why it’s a very good idea to have a formal work agreement:

  1. The document clearly defines the relationship between employer and employee.
  2. The agreement details the nanny’s specific responsibilities, salary, benefits, which party will pay payroll taxes and any other arrangements between the two parties.
  3. The document addresses paid time off, holidays and other issues. It will also serve as a reference to settle any disputes about schedule or salary.
  4. The agreement should cover personal injury liability, such as if the nanny is involved in a car accident or is injured on the property, and who is responsible for paying the deductible. It may cover topics like what will happen if the family changes residences during the time the agreement is in effect.
  5. A written document may override the at-will status of an employee by providing precise start and end dates. Individuals working in at-will states can be fired at any time for any legal reason. The document may still specify the employee can lose a job for no cause or specific violations to the agreement.
  6. All employment terms are detailed in the document. These details may protect the employee who has to quit because the level of responsibility changes or the employee finds out the employer was not paying payroll taxes per the agreement. The document protects both parties if questions arise in the future.
  7. While verbal agreements are technically legally binding, each party may have a different recollection about the details. A written document clarifies the terms for both sides and eliminates any doubt about what the parties decided.
  8. Work agreements are legally binding and enforceable in a court of law.
  9. This document is useful for starting negotiations when it comes time to renew the agreement. The document may be altered or remain as it is, but it should be officially executed with new dates and signatures.
  10. A formal work agreement should detail the steps the employee needs to take if he or she cannot make it to work. This protects the employee’s position and allows the employer enough time to make alternate arrangements if necessary.

Although this type of agreement may initially seem like nothing more than a bunch of legalese, once you start to look at exactly what it does, it becomes clear that it’s something that’s good for both you and your nanny. Instead of creating a tense relationship between the two of you, this type of document actually allows you to remove any ambiguous areas so that you can both feel good about working together!

John Winthorp is a blogger for, which is a site that features nanny jobs