How do I write a simple employment contract?

I am going to be a live-in au pair/nanny and need to know how to format a basic employment contract in layman’s terms.

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2 Responses to “How do I write a simple employment contract?”

  1. rescogirl Says:

    What should a contract cover?
    Basically, anything and everything related to your nanny’s job — no detail is too small. If you’re providing room and board, for example, you may want to pay for the nanny’s own phone line, but not for long-distance charges or Internet access. You should also spell out any other benefits, such as holidays, and personal and sick days, although you’re not obligated to pay your nanny for these. Doing so is a good idea, though — after all, you welcome these job benefits for yourself, and so will she. Your contract should also have information about:
    • Work hours (for example, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.)

    • Benefits (such as health insurance, paid holidays, etc.)

    • Wages and pay schedule (for example, $ 1,000 on the 1st and 15th of every month)

    • Duties (taking your child to and from soccer on Tuesdays and Thursdays, straightening his bedroom, folding his laundry, etc.)

    • Special considerations (for example, if you must stay late at work, you’ll pay $5 per hour above and beyond your nanny’s usual fee, or if she’s sick, she must call you by 7:30 a.m.)

    • Emergency plans (for example, if something comes up, she should call grandma and drop your child there)

    How do I draw up an agreement?
    You can write one yourself (try our sample form). Although you may think of a contract as a daunting legal document, writing one is pretty straightforward as long as you think through what to include. If you like, you can have a lawyer review it after you’ve written it.

    Make sure both you and the nanny sign and date the contract, and make copies for each of you. If you have minor changes (for example, instead of ending her day at 5 p.m., you agree to move it to 6 p.m.), make sure you both initial the amendments and each get a fresh copy.

    In fact, you may want to include a clause that requires you and your nanny to revisit the contract on a certain date (a one-year anniversary works well). When that time comes, you or your nanny can amend the agreement as you see fit. Of course, you’ll have to redo the agreement sooner if you have any major changes in your household, such as a new baby. Better yet, anticipate as many possible changes as you can and explain in the original contract how you will handle them. For example, you could include a clause guaranteeing a pay increase (estimate a percentage increase) for every additional child.

    How do I make the contract binding?
    As with any employment agreement, a nanny contract is hard to enforce. But with one in place a smooth relationship is far more likely because you worked out so many details ahead of time.

  2. Do_what_thou_wilt Says:

    It would be fun to put in a clause that states that if the father — man of the house — ever has sexual relations with you, then it is understood that he is proposing for marriage and it is up to you to decide. And if you decided that you so desire to be his wife than he must proceed with divorce with the current wife within 30 days of you making your intentions clear whether in writing or otherwise. You must be married within 18 months otherwise you are owed 500,000 for breech of contract. (by the way this will never hold up in the court of law but it would be funny and deter the man of the house to ever think of you as a play thing)