View Full Version : Oh no another misunderstanding

26-11-2013, 12:38 PM
Hi all, I do after school care for two children who parents work shifts, they don't require me in the school holidays so did a term time only contract with no retainer in the holidays. During the meeting I informed the parent that I will be flexible in terms of payment and times.. for example one week they may only want me 2 hours three evenings a week and the next 3 hours etc etc ... I informed them that I would charge an hourly rate for the hours booked/used rather than a set session price or set weekly price regardless of attendance and that I require days needed the week before so I can invoice for the week and get payment in advance for the week booked, this has always worked well in the past for me as my main income is EYFS and after schoolies just a bit of extra cash.... fast forward this week, mother phones and advised the youngest is ill and wont be in all week and eldest on a school trip and therefore hasn't paid the bill yet and wanted to know what she owed I advised I still charge for illness etc as it was pre-booked, I get the feeling she wasn't happy and am in for a grilling regarding billing this evening when she collects the eldest. I hate confrontation especially over money how do I deal with this as she has obviously misunderstood the terms
Thanks Straws

26-11-2013, 12:45 PM
I guess I can see where mum might of got mixed up as you only charge for the days used, you need to explain to mum that you have been very flexible in only charging for the days booked in and not charging retainers but make it clear once a day/time is booked that it needs to be paid for as you might turn away other work because you are expecting to be having her children.
If this becomes a problem maybe you need to ask for payment at time of booking and say booking is confirmed until payment is received?

26-11-2013, 12:54 PM
Yes I can see it myself why she thought this, I kind of feel responsible for the misunderstanding :o and she might feel that I misled her

26-11-2013, 01:02 PM
The easiest thing to do is get your contract out & show mum where it says you still charge if the child is off ill.

I would then write out a clear explanation of how your fee structure works, ie. you will only charged for the hours booked, but once these have been booked there is no refund if the child doesn't then attend.

The difficulty I can see is that in you post you have said you will only charge for the days "booked/used". If that's how you've worded it to the parents you can see why they don't think they have to pay for time off. Booked & used can be different, so really you should specify one or the other. You mean they have to pay for hours booked, whereas mum is taking it to mean hours used.

I would also stress to mum how very generous you are in the way you charge, so you don't feel it is unreasonable to charge for all time booked.

Good luck. Hopefully you will sort it out without any upset.