Employing Family Members

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Find out whether you can employ a family member as a Personal Assistant, and what you need to consider.

Equality and Diversity Considerations

PA Employers need to treat their PAs fairly and not to discriminate against them on the basis of a personal or 'Protected Characteristic', such as their gender, age, sexuality, ethnicity or martial status.

Independent Living Fund (ILF) Scotland Information

Find out more about the Independent Living Fund (ILF) Scotland, which enables people to purchase social care support to help them meet outcomes that are important to them. Many people receiving ILF Funding also employ their own PAs.

The Role of Local Authorities (Councils)

Local Authorities (councils) have an important role in making sure that PA Employers have the information and support they need to meet their needs.

The Role of Information and Support Organisations

Local Independent Support Organisations provide free information and guidance at any stage of the SDS process, often from people who have experience of being a PA employer. Using a local organisation like this can help employers understand the process, prepare for their next steps and access services that make being a PA employer easier.

Personal Outcomes and PA Employers

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PA Employers are likely to identify their Personal Outcomes in their Personal Outcomes Plan (or Support Plan). These will focus on what’s important to the Employer and what they would like to achieve.

Training for PA Employers

Find out what training is available to PA Employers to support you in your role.

The Law for PA Employers

When you become a PA Employer there are certain legal responsibilities that you take on. Whilst these might seem daunting at first, it is important to know that you can get a lot of support to understand these and to meet the responsibilities you have, from both an Independent Support organisation and your Council.

PA Employers Employment Responsibilities

This outlines the types of responsibilities that PA Employers have towards their employees, covering the recruitment and on-going support of PAs, as well as the administration required as an employer.

The Role and Responsibilities of a PA (for PA Employers)

The Personal Assistant (PA) role involves much more than personal care. There are many potential roles and responsibilities for a PA which should be specified prior to recruitment.

Your Agreement with Your Local Authority (Council)

When you decide to employ Personal Assistants, your Council will ask you to sign an agreement. Find out what is included in this agreement and how to check it covers everything you need.

PA Employment Status

Learn about the PA's employment status and why it is important to understand the basis of the relationship with the paid worker.

Finding out if a PA is Employed or Self-Employed

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It is important for anyone considering taking on a PA to understand the difference in employment status between an employee and a self-employed PA. This can affect their legal relationship and financial agreements between them. Find out more about how to determine if a PA is employed or self-employed.

The Recruitment Process

When a PA Employer decides to recruit a Personal Assistant, there are a number of things they need to think about and plan for. So for example, it will be important to have a clear job written description for the PA, a plan to advertise the job and a plan to cover the interviewing of potential PAs. It is important that the expectations under employment law are followed during the recruitment process.

Changing an Employment Contract

Before you make a change to an employee's conditions or contract, this section tells you what you need to be aware of. Change is best undertaken when all options have been considered with the employee's involvement and agreement.

Protecting Vulnerable Groups (PVG): For PA Employers

Protecting Vulnerable Groups (PVG) is a membership scheme which makes sure its members are allowed to work with children or protected adults. Anyone who wants to work with children or vulnerable adults will need to have a PVG check first and become members of the scheme. PA Employers will need to request a PVG check for any new potential PAs they want to employ.

Introduction to Health and Safety

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Find out more about your legal duties as a PA Employer when it comes to health and safety, and how to complete a risk assessment.

Covid-19 guidance for PA Employers

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There are now no official Covid-19 rules or restrictions in Scotland. However, this page includes some things you may wish to consider around Covid-19 as an Employer of Personal Assistants. 

Smoking in a PA Employer’s Home

Advise for PA Employers and PAs about how to handle the issue of smoking in an employer's home

PAs’ Role in Helping to Administer Medication

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New/Updated
It might not always be appropriate for Personal Assistants to administer medicine and in many cases training by professionals is required which will be the responsibility of the employer but PAs have responsibilities here too.

Disclaimer

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.