Household Employment Taxes 101

We receive a LOT of questions from families about household employer taxes. Am I considered an employer? Am I required to pay taxes for my caregiver? How much are they?  All great questions.  The general answers are that people who pay a nanny or other caregiver to perform duties in or around their home ARE considered household employers and are required to pay taxes for their employee(s) if you pay that person $1,700 (2011) or more in a calendar year.  

The great news is that by taking advantage of tax breaks such as Dependent Care Accounts / Flexible Spending Accounts and Child and Dependent Tax Breaks, families can often offset or even exceed their nanny tax payments. That means that by paying taxes legally, families can often actually save money!

Here are some resources and information related to household employer taxes that help shed some light on the benefits and requirements of paying taxes for household employees.

How to do backup care at

School will be back in before you know it, and now’s the time to secure back-up coverage so you’re never stuck without quality care. And with more caregivers than ever looking for work, your search has never been easier.

To find backup care at, follow the same necessary steps as finding standard care, except we recommend accumulating a small pool of people you can call on when needed.  Here are the steps:

  1. Post your job (optional) and search for and interview potential candidates who have indicated they’re available for “occasional/as-needed” and/or “back-up/short-notice” assignments (show advanced search options for this search).  
  2. Screen: Checks references, run a thorough background check, and do trial session(s) on final caregiver(s).
  3. When backup care is needed, call your desired caregiver(s) to request backup care.

Run a quick search today to find nannies, housekeepers, sitters, senior caregivers and more!