Senior Home-Care Worker Payroll in Transition

Posted by HomeWork Solutions on Aug 28, 2015 4:44:00 PM

Agency Senior Home-Care Workers About to Become More Expensive

The Obama Department of Labor has been working for the last four years to include senior home-care workers employed by third parties under the Fair Labor Standards Act's minimum wage and overtime provisions. There was also a parallel effort to redefine the services a bona fide senior companion caregiver could provide to align with the Congress' intent of the 1974 expansion of the Fair Labor Standards Act.

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Topics: companionship services, companionship exemption, senior home care, senior home caregiver, senior home-care workers

Questions to ask Nanny References

Posted by HomeWork Solutions on Aug 27, 2015 4:04:00 PM

Hiring a nanny is one of the most important decisions you will make as a parent. If you have narrowed down a few candidates for the nanny position, it is imperative that you find out as much you can about the person. The more information you have, the better decision you will be able to make. Not sure what questions to ask nanny references? This article can help.

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Topics: nanny agency, nanny reference check

Wage Theft Law Facts for Household Employers

Posted by HomeWork Solutions on Aug 24, 2015 3:06:00 PM

Are you an employer that employees one or more household employees? New laws require that employers providing wages to their employees now have the burden of proof, showing that they have paid the workers fairly and that they employees were not short changed out of the pay that they were due.

This shift of the burden of proof from the employee to the employer has huge implications in household employment. Household employment is in the midst of the perfect storm

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Topics: domestic employer legal responsibilities, wage theft prevention

Dad's Home Health Aide is an Independent Contractor? - a Case Study

Posted by HomeWork Solutions on Aug 20, 2015 4:02:00 PM

“Everyone I dealt with at HomeWork Solutions was courteous and helpful, and I was given an immediate answer to every question. It is obvious to me that when it comes to household payroll taxes, working with a specialist is the only way to go.”

Our client, Linda M. came to us when her relationship with her husband’s caregiver was in crisis over taxes. Linda’s husband has dementia and needed supervision during the day. Linda lives in New Jersey and she hired the caregiver in the fall and was paying her in cash every week. An accountant handles the couple’s income taxes, and when she hired the home care aide her accountant told her that everyone treats these workers as independent contractors.


Linda is the first to admit that she doesn’t understand taxes, and prefers not to deal with them. In her circle of friends, all the families pay cash to their housekeepers. After checking with her accountant, she felt very comfortable with her arrangement.

In January, Linda’s accountant helped her prepare a 1099 form to give the caregiver, and that is where the trouble began. The caregiver went to a free tax clinic run by the IRS’ Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program. After chatting with the volunteer about her job, the tax preparer advised the woman that her employer had likely misclassified her as an independent contractor, and that IRS guidance states that home care workers are employees and should receive a W-2 form. Moreover, the volunteer preparer showed the caregiver that the misclassification would cause her to owe an additional $2300 on her income tax return.


The volunteer tax preparer was absolutely correct. Senior caregivers paid directly by the family are employees and should receive a Form W-2 at the end of the year.

Linda was confused about the distinction between an employee and an independent contractor. She did some internet research and then contacted her accountant. Her accountant explained again that everyone calls their housekeepers and senior caregivers an independent contractor, even though they really are employees.” No one wants to deal with the nanny taxes” he explained, “but if you do I suggest you talk to HomeWork Solutions.”  Linda called HomeWork Solutions and received a quick education on why this was important and what her employer responsibilities were. HWS explained that the distinction between employees and contractors is important because employers of household employees such as housekeepers and senior caregivers file and pay employment taxes. Contractors handle their own tax filings. Linda’s accountant had steered her wrong, and there was some catch up Linda needed to do to straighten things out.


It was fortunate that the caregiver had only worked for them for a short time.  HWS helped Linda to understand what taxes Linda needed to pay. Linda engaged HWS to help her get caught up on the taxes, and signed up for HWS’ payroll services so this could be done effortlessly going forward. Linda agreed to pay her employee’s portion of the Social Security and Medicare taxes – an option available to household employers. Linda convinced the caregiver to allow HWS to do paycheck deductions for her income taxes to help her avoid the stress of a large tax bill in the spring.


Since she began working with HomeWork Solutions, Linda has not had a single problem and she credits this with providing her a sense of relief when tax time comes around. Linda’s caregiver is delighted with her direct-deposit payroll, a convenience she has never had before providing private care.


July 2015 Senior Caregiver Independent Contractor Update

On July 15, DOL Administrator David Weil issued an Administrator’s Interpretation that said “most workers [who are classified as independent contractors] are employees under the FLSA’s broad definitions.” This clarification by the government put the final nails in the coffin of the independent contractor myth.

According to attorney Cynthia Effinger of McBrayer, McGinnis, Leslie & Kirkland, PLLC, "The defining question in this calculus is whether the worker is truly in a separate business that is independent economically from the employer. If the worker is economically dependent on the employer, the worker is an employee in the DOL’s eyes."

Read her full opinion...

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Topics: worker misclassification, home health workers, senior caregiver independent contractor, nanny tax case study

Acing the Nanny Job Interview

Posted by HomeWork Solutions on Aug 13, 2015 3:23:00 PM

Nanny job interviews can be a bit intimidating. You might not always know what to expect or what kind of questions you’ll be asked, but there are a few things that can help you prepare. These tips can help you confidently tackle the nanny job interview and hiring process and “wow” the prospective employer.

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Topics: nanny job interview

Senior Homecare: Creating a Work Agreement

Posted by HomeWork Solutions on Aug 6, 2015 3:22:00 PM

If you’re an in-home senior care provider that is looking to work with a new senior, it is important that you establish the ground rules right away. The best way to do that is to create a clear and detailed senior caregiver work agreement that will serve as a guideline for both you and the family. It will outline what is expected and will help both parties avoid confusion in the future, should any unexpected situations or misunderstandings occur. So, how do you create a senior caregiver work agreement? We’ve outlined some of the basic must-haves below.

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Topics: senior caregiver work agreement

When DIY Nanny Taxes Go Wrong

Posted by HomeWork Solutions on Jul 30, 2015 3:21:00 PM

A Nanny Payroll Case Study

There’s no doubt about it. Nanny taxes are complicated. There are federal and state taxes, as well as federal and state labor laws that need to be upheld. For some families, while taxes can be a little overwhelming, they think that they can figure it out themselves. This can be done, but before you do it yourself, you need to know it all – the ins and outs of preparing nanny taxes. If not, the do it yourself method can go terribly wrong. Consider this case study of a family that thought they had a good understanding of tax filings, but in fact, ended up making some costly errors.

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Topics: household payroll literacy, nanny taxes, payroll recordkeeping, nanny tax case study

The Temporary Nanny and Her Taxes

Posted by HomeWork Solutions on Jul 28, 2015 3:00:00 PM

Many nannies work a series of short term assignments throughout the year. These can range from several days to several months, and this may be something that you’re used to doing on a regular basis. But, these types of situations can leave nannies/caregivers confused about how wages should be paid from a payroll and tax perspective. Here, we discuss some of the facts about how your temporary nanny position affects how you pay your taxes.     

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Topics: temporary nanny, temporary household worker

Facts about Nanny Training and Credentialing

Posted by HomeWork Solutions on Jul 23, 2015 3:21:00 PM

If you’re looking to start a career as a nanny, you may be wondering what type of education, nanny training courses, credentials, or licensures you need in order to secure a great job. While there are many places around the world that do in fact involve licensure before getting a nanny job, the United States does not require such licensure. There are a variety of formal nanny training programs in the United States as well as a Nanny Credential Exam through the International Nanny Association that can help individuals prepare for a career as a nanny. We’ve outlined some of the important facts about nanny training, credentialing, and licensure here.

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Topics: nanny training

Senior Home Care and Nanny Misclassification Enforcement Steps Up

Posted by HomeWork Solutions on Jul 21, 2015 11:55:00 AM

Most Workers are Employees!

The US Department of Labor's Administrator of the Wage and Hour Division, David Weil, clearly stated on July 15, 2015 that most workers are considered employees under the Fair Labor Standards Act, as he issued new guidelines aimed at limiting the misclassification of workers as independent contractors.

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Topics: worker misclassification, worker misclassification independent contractor, senior home care

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