What is a Nanny?

Nannies provide childcare in your own home and are a popular choice for many families. They can look after children of any age and should provide plenty of fun and learning opportunities in a safe environment. Nannies can often work flexible hours and can be a suitable option if you work at times when other forms of childcare are not available.

All nannies are employed rather than self-employed which means that you, as an employer, will have to meet certain obligations, not only in terms of paying tax and National Insurance, but also by meeting minimum standards of employment.

Nannies are not required to register with Ofsted.  However the voluntary part of the Ofsted Childcare Register (vOCR) was introduced in April 2007 and you may prefer to use nannies on this register as you will know that they have met specific requirements: 

  •  They will have undergone an enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check
  • Have met other requirements such as holding an appropriate first aid qualification
  • Have training in the common core skills.
  • They will also hold a Public Liability Insurance certificate.

Only parents employing nannies who have joined the vOCR can receive the childcare element of working family tax credit.  Parents should check their eligibility with HMRC before making their arrangements.

For more advice and information about employing a nanny, call the Inland Revenue New Employer Helpline: 0845 60 70 143.

Page last reviewed: 23/01/2024


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