Shropshire Council

Useful links

Contract

HandshakeIf you're employed as a PA you should legally have a contract from your employer with the terms and conditions of your employment in place. These explain your rights, such as holiday entitlement, notice periods, how to deal with a grievance etc. It's a useful tool for sorting out any disagreement. If you don't have one speak to your employer. Sample contracts are attached to this page. You can also find out more from the Skills For Care and ACAS websites.

Pensions

Pensions imageIf you're employed as a PA you may be eligible for a work-based pension. Take a look at the Gov.UK website for more information.

Self-employed PAs

Self-employed signYou should be registered with HMRC as self-employed in order to work as a self-employed PA, and have a unique tax reference number which you'll need to evidence. You'll also have to set up your own public liability insurance and evidence this, and supply a contract of your services. 

We're aware that there are some companies that can support you with working as a self-employed PA, which you'll have to pay a membership fee to. They give lots of helpful advice, some training, help with getting a DBS arranged and one offers discounts, they are:

You may also like to watch a video Becoming a paid carer - getting started

DBS

DBS logoA DBS check is a way for employers to check whether you have a criminal record or not in helping to decide whether you're a suitable person to work for them. This includes deciding whether it's suitable for you to work with children or vulnerable adults. For this you would need an enhanced DBS. IF you don't have an up-to-date one your new employer may request it. They can arrange this via us. Email direct.payments@shropshire.gov.uk

If you're going to work as an employed PA it's a free service, but if you're going to be self-employed there will be a charge - you can contact us or other providers to arrange it.

Find out more from the Gov.UK website. 

Employment issues

SignpostWhere possible any employment issues should be discussed direct with your employer. Support is available from ACAS, and unions can help their members resolve problems or issues related to work, offering confidential advice, support and guidance. There’s usually a fee for joining a union and in return you’ll receive a number of benefits. For example, Unison has a personal assistant support network. You can also find help from the Gov.UK website.

Updates

Update buttonFind out all the latest on direct payments from our newsletter pages. You can also subscribe to the Skills for Care newsletter.

Wages

Coins in a handCurrently we pay enough to direct payment recipients to pay employed PAs up to the standard £11.75/hr, which is above the living wage. However, it's up to your employer to set your wage as long it meets the national minimum wage. 

Self-employed PAs receive £16.00/hr, but don't qualify for holiday or other statutory pay, and are liable for their own tax and insurance.

Safeguarding

Safeguarding handIt's recommended that you attend safeguarding training so that you can identify when your adult employer may be at risk or suffering any type of abuse. Find out more from our training section.

If you feel the person you're working for is being abused, and if it's an emergency, contact 999 or 101 for the police. Otherwise please contact First Point of Contact on 0345 6789044, Mon-Thurs 9am-5pmFri 9am-4pm. Outside of these hours contact the Emergency Duty Team on 0345 6789040. Alternatively, you can report it online.

Support

  • The National Association of Care and Support Workers is a care workers' organisation that includes both employed and self-employed PAs as members. It offers advice and support regarding legal advice, discounted DBSs, counselling, eLearning etc if you sign up and pay a membership fee
  • The Care Workers' Charity specifically supports care workers, including PAs.
  • You may find it useful to sign up to the Skills for Care newsletter that informs you about forthcoming events. You can register on their website.
  • Penderels_Trust  - this is a new website for personal assistants launched by Penderels Trust, the national direct payment support provider.
  • Blue Sky Social Care Card - discount card specifically for PAs
  • Partners in Care is a not-for-profit association supporting independent adult social care providers across Shropshire. They offer PAs training, representation, networking, discounted DBS checks and information, for £48 a year. This is available to self-employed and employed PAs. Any funding implications for employed PAs will need to be discussed with their employer, who will need speak to the Adult Social Care team.

Further info

Thinking of a questionFor more information please take a look at our Keeping Adults Safe in Shropshire website.

If you have concerns about a child/under 18 please report it immediately.