For many, a live-in nanny or au pair is considered a member of the family, but it’s important to remember, that though you may love your nanny, you are actually his/her employer. And with employer status comes payroll, taxes, and insurance. You need to make sure you have the right combination of insurance coverages to protect both your au pair you’re your family. Remember, this is a work issue, not a trust issue.
It’s a common misconception to assume that your homeowner’s policy covers everyone living in the house, whether a family member or not. Most people really don’t imagine how anything can go wrong. But it’s important not to leave your family or your nanny vulnerable. So before you begin the hiring process, it’s a good idea to sit down with your insurance professional, discuss your specific situation, and let them help you understand the liabilities and protections that is appropriate.
Your homeowners liability insurance provides coverage for 3rd party bodily injury or property damage that you cause or occurs at your home. Depending on your State’s laws and whether or not your au pair is working at the time of an incident or “off the clock”, your liability coverage could respond and cover injuries they suffer at your home. However, if he/she is an employee of yours and is injured while “on the clock”, the injury could be deemed a Work Comp related injury and not covered by Homeowners. Since coverage is dependent on location and circumstance, it’s a good idea to speak with your insurance professional regarding your specific set-up and make sure you’re properly protected.
Employers often overlook worker’s compensation because they don’t think of their au pair or nanny as a business employee. Workers Comp is not required in a number of states, but regardless of whether you need to purchase it, by law, you should definitely consider a policy. If your nanny or au pair hurts themselves while on the job, you, the employer, could be personally liable for any resulting damages. Worker’s comp protects both the employer and the nanny. You likely won’t get sued for an on the job injury and your nanny or au pair will have the benefits she needs, if injured.
If your nanny or au pair drives your kids to and from school, camp, play dates, or other activities, you need to make sure that she is adequately insured. If she drives her own car, you will need to pay for her mileage on the job to cover gas, insurance and car maintenance. You may want to make sure that your nanny is adequately insured, and if you feel she is under-insured, you can pay the difference between her current coverage and the coverage you want her to carry.
If your au pair drives a car you own, you need to make sure that she is added to your policy. If she is in an accident, the policy won’t cover her unless she’s been included as a driver on the policy.
Remember, now that you’ve hired a nanny or au pair, you are an employer and there’s more to insuring your employee than most initially consider. The insurance professionals at Foundation Insurance Group will review your current insurance policies and discuss the needs or your specific situation with you. We’ll make sure you have all the coverage you need to protect both your au pair and you. To see our full range of coverage options, visit our website or call us today.