Introduction to Employer Responsibilities

There is a lot of information about becoming a Personal Assistant (PA) employer but there is also a lot of support.

Below is a breakdown of each of the roles and responsibilities. A social worker will be responsible for assessing need and works closely with the individual to ensure their needs are met. A Managed Payroll Service makes managing employees much easier by doing a lot of the regular employer paperwork efficiently. An Independent Support Organisation can really help with understanding all the relevant processes, and provide support with them, from the perspective of people who have lived experience of being PA employers. Indemnifiers are companies that manage insurance to protect the employer.

Social Worker

The social worker has most important responsibility because, as soon as someone has been assessed as having an eligible need, the social worker has a duty of care to that person. The social worker will always be an integral part of whichever option a person chooses. They provide support with the care package including budgeting and reviewing needs. If the individual has a health condition which is deteriorating or improving, the social worker would review this on a regular basis and amend the package of care accordingly.

Managed Payroll Service

A payroll service will not only register the employer and their employees with HMRC, but they will also process payslips, and arrange bank transfers of the PAs wages, arrange P60s and provide financial returns for the local authority (council). They may hold an account in the employer’s name, so they may not need to open a bank account.

An Independent Support Organisation

Connecting with a local Independent Support Organisation can be an important way to access daily support.They provide information associated with becoming an employer, the associated paperwork and systems. This support can range from advertising for PAs to terminating employment.


The indemnifier is the organisation that manages the required insurance. As well as the Independent Support Organisation, they will advise on constructing contracts. They will ensure PA holiday entitlement, disciplinary procedures, and other processes are all administered legally and offer a 24/7 employment law advice service.

The PA Employer

The PA Employer has the remaining responsibility. This involves the daily management of and the relationship with staff. Help is available for everything else.

Next steps

Take a look at the article on ‘Is Being a PA Employer for me?’

Part of
Last Updated
20 June 2022
First Published
28 March 2022
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Please note that the information contained in this Handbook is provided for guidance purposes only. Every reasonable effort is made to make the information accurate and up to date, but no responsibility for its accuracy and correctness, or for any consequences of relying on it, is assumed by Self Directed Support Scotland or any other contributing party.

The information does not, and is not intended to, amount to legal advice. You are strongly advised to obtain specific, personal and professional advice from a lawyer about employment law matters, or an accountant/ tax specialist about taxation matters, and from HMRC and your insurers. You should not rely solely on the information in this Handbook. Support organisations listed in this Handbook can help you find appropriate sources of advice.