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- You must have a note of the parent’s contact details
- You must visit the home(s) where you are to babysit beforehand, identify any associated risks, advise the parent of any such risks in writing and take/recommend any appropriate action
- You must obtain the medical details and permissions for emergency treatment in respect of each child to be looked after
- You must obtain the parent’s signature confirming the above information.
- You must be working on a self-employed basis
- You must not work at the crèche for more than two hours per day
- The children you mind as a registered childminder must not be with you whilst you are working in the crèche
- You must have been asked to carry out this work by an authorised representative of a local authority, Sure Start or children’s centre
- The adult to child supervision ratio at the crèche must be at least one adult to six children and must comply with any restrictions stated in Ofsted’s or other registering authority’s guidelines.
Unlike some other insurance companies, you are covered under the Public Liability section of the policy up to the limit of £5,000,000 for any one occurrence if you are legally liable for the damage and it occurred in connection with your childminding activities.
Even if the damage to someone else’s property was not your legal responsibility, you are still covered under the Property section of this policy, for costs and expenses incurred with the Company’s consent, up to £1,000 for any one occurrence.
Having a clear written contact signed by you and the parent detailing the fees charged for your services should assist you when a parent fails to pay. The signed contract provides evidence that the parent agreed to pay the monies due to you before the service was provided. Where possible, it is highly recommended that you collect your fees a month in advance as this should eliminate the amount of time you spend trying to recover outstanding debts.
If you do find that a parent owes you money, you should not leave the debt outstanding for a considerable time before taking any action. Once a payment is overdue, then a letter to the parent should be written detailing the amount of money believed to be owing to you, how this debt has occurred i.e. outstanding childminding fees, notice period etc. and giving the parent a reasonable time to reply – a month is usual. You should also warn the parent that you will seek legal advice should they fail to reply within the timescale given. If you would like help and advice in relation to preparing this letter then please contact the legal helplines provided in the policy. If the parent fails to respond to your letter and the debt remains outstanding then you may decide you want to take the matter further to the small claims court.
Before deciding to take the matter further, you must consider whether the parent has the means to pay you for the outstanding debt. Even if a court awards in your favour, the court does not help you recover the money from the parent, it only legally acknowledges that the debt is owed to you. You must then seek to recover the money yourself. If the parent continues to not pay the money owed to you, then you would need to apply to the court for further assistance in recovering the debt. In some circumstances and where the debt has not been outstanding for more than 90 days, the Legal Expenses section of your policy may be able to provide some assistance in recovering the debt, subject to certain terms and conditions (please see the full policy wording).
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