When you are hiring a maid, you have several legal obligations that you have to comply with for your own best interests. Keep in mind that this is a legal contract and, thus, legal obligations are part of the package especially in cases when the maid is an independent contractor or your employee under relevant labor laws.
Your Tax Responsibilities
If you hired an independent contractor, you have few tax responsibilities especially as the independent contractor pays for his own taxes. You need not fill out Form 1099-MISC of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) mainly because an exception excludes household workers including cleaning professionals.
Emphasis must be made that the term “independent contractor” pertains to an accredited/certified professional who offers his services to the general public, provides for his own supplies, and acts independently of his clients.
But when the maid becomes your employee under existing legal definitions and interpretations, your tax responsibilities will change. Your basic responsibilities as an employer include:
- Get an employer identification number (EIN) at the IRS
- Check the validity of immigration documents including asking your maid to fill out the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) Form I-9, among other documents
- Pay the taxes for Medicare and Social Security
- Withhold and remit the maid’s income taxes
- Pay the maid’s federal unemployment (FUTA) taxes, if applicable
You may want to hire an accountant to handle these matters, too, just to be on the safe side of the taxman.
Your Insurance Responsibilities
You must ask your local authorities about insurance coverage for your maid in case he is considered as your employee. This is because each state has its own rules and regulations concerning workers’ compensation insurance – some limit it depending on the salary amount or the number of workers, some exclude domestic workers entirely.
In case you are required by law to provide workers’ compensation insurance, you can ask your insurance provider to have it included in your homeowner’s insurance policy. Your other options include buying a rider or getting an endorsement.
You may also be required by your state to pay for state unemployment insurance for your maid/employee. This provides income replacement, among other benefits, for your current employee in case your employee-employer relationship ends for any reason.
Does these legal responsibilities of hiring a maid as your employee becoming a headache? You should seriously consider hiring full-time or part-time maids from professional cleaning service companies like Merry Maids!
You will get the best results in residential cleaning while skipping on the abovementioned legal obligations since the employer-employee relationship between you and the Merry Maids cleaning maids does not exist.