When you’re working as a self-employed paid carer, or in the process of setting up your own business, one area that you need to consider is having a contract that you can use with your clients. This is an essential piece of paperwork and should be customised to suit each client’s needs, with both parties agreeing to terms and conditions. This article looks at things you should think about when you prepare a contract as as a self-employed paid carer.
The reason that a contract is so important is that it protects both the service user and the paid carer. It outlines exactly the kind of work that will be undertaken and the manner in which it will be done.
Here is a list of things that should be included in any contract between a paid carer and their clients:
When you prepare a contract, the type of work should be clearly laid out so there is no confusion between both parties. This prevents you, as a paid carer, from undertaking tasks that you are not comfortable, willing, or qualified to do. It helps to manage expectations on both sides and helps to form the basis of a relationship between service user and paid carer. This could also include work that will not be carried out if there are specific tasks you wish to exclude.
It’s important to ensure that payment is agreed upon by both parties. Having this in the contract clearly makes it easy for the service user to set a budget and for the paid carer to ensure a regular income.
The days and times of regular work should be included too. This means that the service user knows when to expect their visits and the paid carer can plan their workload. This should also include the duration of each visit and the time spent with the client.
There should be information about the responsibilities of the paid carer and the service user in relation to each other. This can include things like adhering to a care plan, having certain policies in place, safeguarding, risk assessment procedures and so on. It should also include what will happen if the paid carer is off sick or on holiday, such as notice given.
There may be some specific requirements or requests that are outside of standard terms and these should all be included within the contract where relevant. The more that is covered in this document, the less likelihood there is of any confusion arising in expectations between the two parties.
When you prepare a contract, there should also be details about how to end the contract. This might include an initial period of, for example, a month where either party can choose to end the contract if it’s not right for them. Past this initial period, there should be details of notice periods to be given if either party wants to end the contract.
You can purchase a template contract from our Document Store, which has been developed for people who are self-employed paid carers. This document, which has been checked by a solicitor, is a template which you can customise to suit your needs.