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nanny industry

The Affordable Care Act: Your Nanny’s Health Insurance

ACA_logoAs an update to our December 9th post, here is the final ruling and most current information from Breedlove & Associates regarding helping your nanny with her health insurance.

Affordable Care Act:

As a result of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), most individuals are required to have health insurance or face a monetary penalty. While household employers are not required to provide health insurance for their employee, families can provide or contribute to a policy to help meet this mandate. Additionally, Congress has two types of tax incentives to encourage household employers to contribute to their employee’s health insurance.

The first incentive is to allow employer contributions toward an employee’s health insurance premiums to be treated as non-taxable compensation — meaning neither employer nor employee has to pay taxes on that portion of the compensation. The second incentive is an employer tax credit on health insurance contributions. Combined, these incentives make it wise to consider health insurance contributions as part of the compensation package.

NON TAXABLE COMPENSATION

Household employers with 1 employee can contribute to their employee’s health insurance premiums and treat the entire amount as non-taxable compensation. (Employers with 2 or more employees must purchase health insurance through SHOP to gain this benefit). This creates a significant tax advantage in situations where the employee has obtained, or is planning to obtain, health insurance. For the employee, it has the effect of paying for the health insurance premiums with pre-tax dollars, which effectively reduces the cost by a percentage equal to the employee’s marginal tax rate. For most household employees, this will be somewhere in the 15-20% range. For the family that employs the worker, it reduces the taxable wages upon which their employer taxes are based, thereby saving them approximately 10% of the amount of the health insurance contributions. Using an average health insurance cost of $350 per month, the nanny saves about $600-$800 per year and the family saves about $400 per year — simply by strategically structuring the payroll.

To achieve these tax advantages, we recommend that families pay the insurance company directly. This will eliminate any possibility of the money being used for other purposes and will make life much easier in the event of an audit. If that’s not possible, we recommend getting copies of the monthly health insurance invoices.

HEALTH INSURANCE TAX CREDIT FOR SMALL EMPLOYERS

The Health Insurance Tax Credit for Small Employers enables employers who pay for at least half (50%) of their employee’s health insurance premiums to take a tax credit of up to 50% of the annual contribution amount. (Health Savings Accounts and Health Reimbursement Accounts are not eligible for this tax break). To qualify for this tax credit, the employer must have fewer than 25 employees, pay average annual wages (for all employees) of less than $50,000 and purchase the policy through SHOP (Small Business Health Options Program).
Note: Because SHOP is a relatively new program, frequent changes and updates may occur. Please visit the SHOP website for more information.
The tax credit percentage of 50% gradually decreases as the average annual salary increases. Using an average household employee salary of $30,000 and an average health insurance cost of $350 per month, a family would receive a tax credit of $1,680 on their federal income tax return.

FAQ’S: THE AFFORDABLE CARE ACT:

What is the Affordable Care Act?
The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, commonly referred to as the Affordable Care Act, is a federal statute which was signed into law in 2010. The statute is primarily aimed at reducing the overall cost of health care and decreasing the number of uninsured individuals living in the United States by enacting a number of different mandates, subsidies and tax credits.

Am I required to offer health insurance to my employee(s)?
No, employers are not required to offer health insurance if they employ fewer than 50 employees. However, you are required to provide your current employee(s) and, at the time of hire, any future employee(s) with notice of the new Health Insurance Marketplace.

Is my employee required to have health insurance?
Yes, beginning in 2014, your employee may be charged penalties if she does not have health insurance coverage. However, you are not responsible for making sure your employee has health insurance.

What is the Health Insurance Marketplace?
The Health Insurance Marketplace, or The Marketplace, is a “one-stop shop” where individuals can compare and purchase health insurance policies. Open enrollment for The Marketplace opens on November 15, 2014 for coverage beginning January 1, 2015. Your employee(s) will be able to purchase health insurance through The Marketplace until open enrollment ends on February 15, 2015. For more information on The Marketplace, or to complete an online application for health insurance coverage, please visit www.HealthCare.gov.

How much will health insurance cost?
The cost of health insurance will vary depending on your state and the amount of coverage your employee chooses. After completing an application through The Marketplace, your employee will be able to compare prices and coverage options for different health insurance policies. Depending on your employee’s income and family size, she may be eligible for the Advance Premium Tax Credit if she purchases insurance through The Marketplace. The credit can be applied directly to her monthly premiums which results in immediate cost savings. If she qualifies for the Advance Premium Tax Credit, her savings will be reflected in the prices displayed on The Marketplace.

If I contribute to my employee’s health insurance policy, will I be eligible for any tax breaks?
If you have 1 employee and contribute to their health insurance premium, the amount of your contribution is considered “non-taxable compensation” – so neither you nor your employee would have any taxes on that portion of the compensation. In addition to the non-taxable advantage, if you set up a health insurance policy for your employee through SHOP (Small Business Health Options Program) on the Marketplace and pay at least 50% of your employee’s premiums, you may be able to take advantage of the Credit for Small Employer Health Insurance. To take this credit, you’ll attach Form 8941 to your personal income tax return. The credit is up to 50% of the contribution you pay. If you have 2 or more employees, you must purchase a policy through SHOP in order for your contributions to be considered non-taxable.

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The Affordable Care Act: Potential changes to Nanny Health Insurance

ACA_logoThere is LOTS of conflicting information out there at the moment regarding the way that nanny health insurance can be handled with the changes brought by the Affordable Care Act.  We are keeping in close contact with Breedlove & Associates to figure out how to advise our clients and nannies.  Unfortunately, as of today we are in limbo on how the new Affordable Care Act will affect the way families have been handling helping their nanny with health insurance. Read more »

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August Nanny of the Month!

7-14-14 #1This month, the accolade goes to Amanda McNellis!

Amanda has been with Annie’s Nannies since 2012 and has fast become one of our families’ favourites! She is known for her sweet nature and her extensive knowledge of infant and newborn care.  Her full-time family ADORED her and were sad to see her go. A recent on call family said:

“Oh gosh, it could not have been easier, or gone any better! What a lifesaver! I was so relieved to get that day covered as (of course) it was a rare occasion where I could not call in sick, and with such short notice, wow! Amanda was warm, kind, prompt and very thoughtful. She sent us photos throughout the day and updated us on how Ben was doing. Both my husband and myself felt very comfortable with her and would certainly recommend her to any other family in need!”

We asked Amanda to tell us something funny that a child said to her recently, she said: “I remember a 3 year old little boy saying to me recently “you talk too much” when we were playing with his toys, it totally cracked me up! Something cute that a 5 year old little girl said to me was “I like your shiny headband, you look like a princess!” too cute!”

Thank-you Amanda for being a wonderful Nanny to the Annie’s Nannies community! We are so glad to have you!

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So Your Boss “Friended” you on Facebook..

social-media-3-390x285Part 2 of our Social Media Series:

Most nannies out there have been in this situation…..the friend request from an employer. What to do?

Combining a personal social media tool with your professional life is not always the wisest decision, but there’s the chance that feelings will be hurt if you refuse. Sources online are unanimous in saying that accepting a friend request from your boss is not a good idea. They suggest the safe alternative is to send a message saying “Hi Boss, I prefer to keep my Facebook for my personal life. Would you like to connect on Linked In?”

If you do want to accept the request, see here for guidelines to making your Facebook and online presence “Boss Friendly.”

Other Helpful links:

To Friend or Not to Friend?

Nanny Support Group-Facebook?

5 Reasons Not to Friend your Nanny

 

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CPR/First Aid Class – October 2014

Nanny Specific First Aid & CPR Certification Class

Our next highly-regarded First Aid, CPR, HIV and Blood-born Pathogens Class is scheduled for October 19th!  

Here’s what you need to know:

  • What:  Nanny only First Aid, CPR, HIV and Blood-born Pathogens Class, with extra focus on Infant/Child CPR
  • When: Sunday, October 19th from 2:00pm-5:00pm
  • Where: Phinney Neighborhood Center Room #6, Seattle
  • Cost: $35 per person
  • Details: 2 year certification in First Aid, CPR, HIV & Blood-born Pathogens
  • Register: Click the Sign Up Now button below!

This isn’t only for ANI Nannies, pass this on to any of your nanny friends!

We’re excited to see you there on Sunday October 19th!

 

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First Aid & CPR Certification Class – July 2014

First Aid & CPR Certification Class

baby

Start the Summer off by getting qualified and confident in life-saving skills. 

Our next highly-regarded First Aid, CPR, HIV and Blood-born Pathogens Class is scheduled for July 19th!

Here’s what you need to know:

  • What:  Nanny only First Aid, CPR, HIV and Blood-born Pathogens Class, with extra focus on Infant/Child CPR
  • When: Saturday, July 19th from 9:00am-12:00pm
  • Where: Phinney Neighborhood Center Room #6, Seattle
  • Cost: $35 per person, snacks will be included!
  • Details: 2 year certification in First Aid, CPR, HIV & Blood-born Pathogens
  • Register: Click the Sign Up Now button below!

This isn’t only for ANI Nannies, pass this link on to any of your nanny friends!

guardian-association-affiliate-program-sign-up-now

We’re excited to see you there on

Saturday July 19th!

 

“I completed my CPR class this weekend. The instructor was great! […] Very passionate and thorough, and he advised us to “practice” or at least to go over it all in our heads until it’s IN THERE… Very good advice. I’m glad I went to that particular class and wanted to say, “Thanks for choosing such an awesome instructor.”” – Nanny Kimber

What a great CPR class! The teacher made a suggestion that I’ve never heard in my 20 years of taking CPR classes, PRACTICE! He was great!” - Nanny Nicole 

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Being Paid “On the Books” Pays off- Part 2

As we discussed in Part 1 of this series, being paid legally and knowing the basics of the tax law, are an important part of being treated as a professional. In this section we are going to show you some real world examples of why being paid professionally pays off! Read more »

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Being Paid “On the Books” Pays off!- Part 1

 

As a childcare professional, you have one of the most important and noble jobs in the world – to nurture, protect, educate, guide and inspire children.  You should view yourself – and demand to be treated – as a professional.  In part, this means making sure that your compensation is handled accurately, fairly and legally. Read more »

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Annie’s Nannies–Next CPR/First Aid CLASS!

girl with bearOur 2014 training calendar is kicking off on February 8th with our highly regarded First Aid, CPR, HIV and Blood-born Pathogens Class! Start the year off by getting qualified and confident in life-saving skills.

“I completed my CPR class this weekend. The instructor was great! […] Very passionate and thorough, and he advised us to “practice” or at least to go over it all in our heads until it’s IN THERE… Very good advice. I’m glad I went to that particular class and wanted to say, Thanks for choosing such an awesome instructor.””
- Nanny Kimber

Here’s what you need to know:
•    What:  Nanny only First Aid, CPR, HIV and Blood-born Pathogens Class, with extra focus on Infant/Child CPR
•    When: Saturday, February 8th from 9:00am-12:00pm
•    Where: Phinney Neighborhood Center; Room #3, Seattle
•    Cost: $35 per person, snacks will be included!
•    Details: 2 year certification in First Aid, CPR, HIV & Blood-born Pathogens
•    Register: Click the Sign Up Now button below!

This isn’t only for ANI Nannies, pass this email onto any of your nanny friends!

We’re excited to see you there on Saturday February 8th!

SIGN UP NOW

Please contact fleur@aniseattle.com or call 206-784-8462 with any questions.

Payment will be taken either via check or credit card, and is due by Wednesday February 5th, 2014 to secure your place in the class.

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Thoughtful Answers from Nannies

As part of the process to be represented by Annie’s Nannies, we ask that all of our Nanny candidates answer twenty essay questions. The questions are designed to gain a deeper sense of a candidate’s childcare philosophy and personal experience working with children and supporting families. It’s an opportunity for the candidate to speak in her own voice and the answers often become a dynamic narrative that augment the linear format of a typical resume.

We look for heartfelt and thoughtful answers that convey wisdom and a genuine love of children.

We’d like to share answers we think particularly exemplify this!

Nanny Andrea H. answered the following two questions:

Describe a specific time when you positively affected the life of a child.

Kindergarten Obst“At the time, I was the part time nanny to a little boy who had just started Kindergarten. He was struggling greatly with the first homework assignment which was to memorize and be able to write his first and last name, home phone number, and address. He had struggled with ADHD, and the parents and I were trying alternatives to medication because he was so young. Sitting down and writing/studying after school was difficult for him, so I devised an alternative plan. I made an obstacle course around the living room and family room with physical movements (running, jumping, somersaults, etc) mixed with stations where he said his phone number, wrote his address on a chalkboard, and spelled his name. We spent the afternoon going around and around the course with me as his coach reminding him of the next step and cheering him on.

When we finished we were jumping up and down and cheering together, and he gave me a double high five and a hug. He told me I was even cooler than his teacher. After a couple days using our new study-course, he was able to say and write his information on his own at school, and was so proud of his achievement!”

Describe a specific difficult situation that you have had with a child and how you handled it.

“The most difficult situation I have had with a child occurred at the park with the 3 year old boy I cared for at the time. He was shy with other children, and usually needed encouragement to play, but that day a little girl really wanted his attention. He was making faces at her and saying “go away.” When the little girl was far enough away I asked him why he didn’t want to play, and emphasized speaking to others with kindness. He told me he didn’t want to play with her because of the color of her skin. Having never heard this kind of talk from him or other children before, I immediately removed both of us from the situation so that the girl and her mother wouldn’t hear or be hurt by what he may say. 

kids playingWhen we got home, we talked about how people’s color of skin, hair, and other physical traits do not determine the kind of a person they are, and that our differences are what make the world interesting and beautiful. I provided some examples and talked about how the sun changes his skin in the summer time. When his mother got home at the end of the day, we had him play while we discussed the day. I let her know gently what had happened, and that I knew his words were not a reflection of anything that they had taught him. It was an emotional and difficult conversation, but a very important one. We then discussed how to move forward together to teach tolerance and appreciation for everyone. 

I planned the rest of the week with a multi-cultural theme, and went to the library to find books for children about acceptance of others, as well as books for me about teaching tolerance to pre-school aged children. We were consistent in talking more about the subject as the months went on, and I am happy to say this was never a problem again.”

Thank you for sharing these with us Andrea. Well done!

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Annie's Nannies, Inc. / 6041 California AVE SW Suite 105 / Seattle, WA 98136 / PHONE: (206) 784 - 8462 / FAX: (206) 789 - 1921