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Au Pair with youing child

Need an Au Pair ? Need to register with Revenue as an employer

Recent test case declares Au Pair an employee

Under a recent ruling by the Workplace Relations Commission the position of au pair has been declared to be employment. This means that all current and future au pairs are entitled to the protection of all employment laws in Ireland. This includes, the minimum wage legislation, holidays, time off, work breaks and where applicable, minimum notice.


The case was taken by a Spanish au pair with the assistance of the Migrant Rights Centre of Ireland. Her employer was ordered to pay almost €10,000 in arrears of pay and compensation.

Prior to this payment to au pairs was considered pocket money. With board, lodgings and cultural exchange being of benefit to the au pair.

While many host families treated au pairs as family members, unfortunately some others treated them as a cheap labour source.

What does this mean for Irish households wishing to use the services of an au pair?

It means that you will have to

  1. register with Revenue as an employer See, Registering for Tax 

  2. Draw up a contract of employment, more which will outline the terms and conditions of employment.

  3. Make sure that you comply with the Organisation of Working Time, more legislation in relation to breaks, time off, maximum working hours, holidays, more etc. Keep adequate records.

  4. Pay at least the minimum wage, more

  5. Ensure a safe work environment, more

  6. Consider what steps you must take if you have to terminate their employment, more

  7. Read

      Code of Practice for Protecting Persons Employed in Other People's Homes, Download here

      Employment Rights of Domestic Workers in Ireland, Download here

What next?

Please read the information which we provide on our website and if you would like more information or advice, contact us



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Image courtesy Phillip Capper  cc.15


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