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Sponsored post: Employing a PA and getting the right insurance

Posted on 17/09/2015

If you have care and support needs and want genuine choice and control over the way your care is delivered, employing your own Personal Assistant (PA) is still the best option available.

Deciding whether or not to become an employer requires some understanding of the accompanying legal responsibilities. It is necessary to consider whether the benefits outweigh the additional duties that come with it.

Employment relationships can be strong and long lasting, but must be nurtured and respected by both parties in order to thrive. Employment law in the UK provides a framework within which this can happen, while enabling you to deal with problems and challenges fairly as they arise.

Your local authority or support service can help you when considering whether to become an employer. For a list of support organisations in your area, the Skills for Care information hub is a good place to start.

What basic obligations do I have as an employer?

The basic legal responsibilities required of an employer can be broken down as follows:

Payroll and the HMRC

At regular intervals you will need to pay your staff and provide them with an accompanying payslip. You are also required to inform the HMRC when doing so to make sure you are deducting the necessary tax and national insurance (NI) contributions. Most individual employers use a payroll provider to do this on their behalf for a small fee.

Automatic enrolment

You will need to register with the Pensions Regulator and may need to enrol your staff onto a basic pension scheme. All of this can be organised by your payroll provider and is relatively inexpensive in most cases. 

Employment contracts

The law states that you must provide a written document to all employees within eight weeks of their start date detailing the terms and conditions of their employment. This is commonly referred to as a contract of employment.

Insurance

You are required by law to purchase employers’ liability cover, which enables you to compensate your employees should they be injured while working for you. If you are receiving support from you local authority or support service, you will probably be given a choice of insurance provider. Mark Bates Ltd (the home of Premier Care) is one of the providers you are likely to be offered.

About Mark Bates Ltd

Mark Bates Ltd is one of the UK’s leading specialist insurers for people with mobility needs. Our Home Employment (HE) insurance provides £10 million employers’ liability cover and is the most comprehensive cover available on the market.

The HE policy also provides:

  • £5 million public liability
  • Personal accident cover
  • £100,000 legal expenses
  • Free 24hr telephone helplines
  • Redundancy cover
  • Public liability cover

The insurance we provide has helplines open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, for you to seek support with your employment/HR needs. If you have a problem with a PA, need a contract drawn up or want some support with recruitment, we’re here to provide expert telephone and email advice whenever you need it.

We work closely with local authorities and support groups to make employing PAs as easy as possible so you can enjoy the benefits without being overly burdened by the associated responsibilities. By seeking support from your local authority, support organisation and insurer, being a PA employer can be empowering and even life changing.

New product: Home Employment Insurance with Healthcare 

The majority of our HE policy holders are in receipt of a Direct Payment from their local council, some fund their own support and a growing minority receive a Direct Payment from the NHS in the form of a Personal Health Budget (PHB). PHBs are a new option for people who want to remain as independent as possible while receiving the essential healthcare support they need.

Premier Care has been liaising with NHS England to understand the additional risks involved when employing a PA to undertake healthcare tasks and as a result we have expanded our HE cover accordingly.

The new policy incorporates all the benefits of our Home Employment Deluxe policy with additional cover (up to £5 million) should you be injured by one of your employees while working for you.

For more details about any of our policies or if you have any questions, please see our website or contact us directly at enquiries@markbatesltd.com.

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