If you’re looking to earn some extra money as a child care provider, the summer months can be a great opportunity. Many families are in need of care while school’s out, and you can often make more money in the summer. But before the trips to the pool and fun in the sun starts, there are three important things you need to understand about how your pay will be handled.
1. The family most likely will need to withhold taxes from your pay
“If you earn more than $2,400 in a year from any family you work for, the IRS requires certain taxes be withheld from your pay and also paid by the family,” says Desiree Leung, Head of Operations of Care.com HomePay. “And if you assume your summer job takes up 12 weeks, that means you’ll hit the threshold earning just $200 per week.”
Indeed, the odds are taxes will need to factor into your employment arrangement, just like nearly any other summer job you may have taken in the past. Before you begin working, you’ll need to give the family your contact information and Social Security number so they can fill out their tax forms correctly. You’ll also need to fill out a Form W-4 to let them know how much in income taxes should be withheld from your pay.
Read more about how payroll and taxes work for nannies.
2. Keep track of the hours you work each week
The family you’re working for may not be used to having a nanny, so you may need to take some matters into your own hands. Ideally, you should have a nanny contract in place that spells out exactly what your work schedule is, but you should also keep track of your hours to make sure you’re being paid for every hour you work — and to know when you qualify for overtime pay.
Schedules can change on a whim and the family may honestly forget that you worked nine hours instead of eight one day. This is important to track because if you work 40 or more hours during the course of a week, you’re entitled to overtime (1.5 times your hourly rate) for those additional hours. At the end of the day, having two sets of eyes on your working hours is just a smart thing to do.
3. Stay in touch with the family after the job ends
Assuming you earned at least $2,400 during the summer, the family will need to mail you a Form W-2 at the end of January so you can file your taxes. If you move between the end of the summer and the New Year, you’ll need to let the family know so they can get that important tax form to you.
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* The information contained in this article is general in nature, may not be applicable to your specific circumstances, and is not intended to be a substitute for or relied upon as personalized tax or legal advice.