Whether you have the occasional household cleaning, or live-in home help, it is important to ensure that your hired household help is as protected as you are. The type of coverage depends on the nature of the employee.

Types of Home Help

Insuring the HelpThere are several different types of household help that you may choose to hire, or may currently have working in your home. If you need nursing care, you have a registered nurse come to your home daily for home healthcare.

If you are recovering from a recent surgery or accident, you may have regular visits from a physical therapist. In addition, you may have a nanny who watches your children during the day, a landscaper who comes on the weekends, and housecleaners who arrive on a weekly or monthly basis to take care of basic household duties.

Regardless of the type of home help you employ, they generally fall into three main categories: Contractors, occasional workers, and full-time employees. The easiest way to determine what type of worker you employ is by how they are paid, and how often they work.

Type of Help What They Do How They Are Paid How Often
Contractors Any type of home help can be hired through a contractor. You pay an organization, like a maid service company, and the company pays the individual. May be occasional, or on a regularly scheduled basis.
Occasional The occasional babysitter, or lawn mower. You pay them directly after their work is completed each time. Occasionally.
Permanent Permanent employees of your household often provide a variety of duties. You pay the individual on an hourly or salary basis generally paid monthly, or bi-weekly. They are an everyday, permanent fixture in your home.

 

Once you’ve evaluated what type of household help you employ, you can determine what type of insurance coverage will keep you (and your help) protected.

Contractors

Ask the contracting company for a copy of its certificates of insurance. Ensure that each employee is covered by workers compensation. If they offer benefits like health and disability insurance, you can feel comfortable that any worker injured on your property will be taken care of through the contracting company and no additional coverage is required by you.

Occasional

Since these workers are in your home only occasionally, consider getting more liability insurance and/or increasing no-fault medical coverage which covers injuries on someone other than an immediate family member.

Permanent

If you hire a permanent employee, consider purchasing a worker’s compensation policy for this person. This is the best way to ensure they are covered if they are injured on the job at your home. It also provides death benefits.

Some states may require this coverage for any domestic employees. If you’re required under state laws to buy workers compensation insurance and you fail to do so, your homeowner’s insurance policy will not pay for any fines, court awards or any other penalties against you.

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Summer means it’s time to break out the popsicles, sunscreen, and backyard pool. Whether you blow up a kiddie pool, or make an Olympic-sized enhancement to your backyard, swimming pools pose a risk at any size.

10 Tips for Swimming Pool SafetyAccording to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there are approximately 7.4 million swimming pools in homes, backyards, or public areas across the country. With water activities being one of the most popular ways to stay cool in the summer, it’s no wonder kids flock to that attractive blue water from dawn to dusk.

However, there are over 3,400 unintentional fatal drownings each year in the country, and one in five of those involves a child under the age of 14. If you own a pool, or set one up for kids to play in your backyard, you are opening yourself and your home up to a mountain of liability.

To protect yourself and your family against devastating loss and financial turmoil, keep in mind a few simple pool safety rules before jumping into the deep end.

1.Before allowing any and all children into your backyard to swim, ask them if they know how to swim and have them demonstrate. A good swimmer should accompany learners, and no one should swim alone.

2.Check your local requirements on what constitutes a “pool” and what local safety standards or codes you must adhere to by the law. This may include a fence, or keeping necessary safety equipment on hand.

3.Check with your insurance company to see if you may need additional liability coverage and to cover the pool itself in the event of storms or damage.

4.Educate your family and your children on what to do in case of an emergency when they are swimming with their friends.

5.Never leave small children unsupervised, and keep toys or floats out of the pool when they are not in use.

6.Know who is in the pool at all times, do not allow children into your pool without talking to their parents and understanding the skill levels or special needs of all swimmers.

7.Keep children away from pool filters and other mechanical devices as the suction force may injure them or prevent them from surfacing. Understand and practice shutting off these devices in case of an emergency.

8.Do not mix swimming with alcohol use. According to the CDC, alcohol use is involved in up to half of adolescent and adult deaths associated with water recreation.

9.Keep all necessary emergency equipment near the pool including ring buoys, a first aid kit, and reaching poles.

10.Take the time for you and other members of your family to complete a CPR training course offered by the American Red Cross so you are ready in case of an emergency.

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