Babysitters and nannies can be at risk for many of the same injuries facing teachers. For example, teachers sometimes suffer an injury while breaking up a fight or can hurt themselves slipping on a floor while rushing to respond to an emergency. There are also some dangers that babysitters may face more than teachers do. For example, sitters can be more at risk of dog bites from the client's pet.
If a babysitter or nanny suffers an injury on the job in Louisiana, is there a case for workers compensation? There could be, so before you dismiss the notion, seek the advice of an attorney.
Louisiana says that household employers do not have to carry workers' compensation insurance for their employees, although it is a strong recommendation. In fact, the recommendation is in place not only to protect injured workers but also the employers. If a babysitter or nanny sustains an injury while doing the job and the employer does not have workers' compensation, the employer could be personally liable for medical care and other expenses. Thus, opting for workers' compensation insurance is a way for employers to safeguard their assets and money. (When you accept workers' compensation benefits, you normally give up the option of suing the employer.)
The state recommendation to have workers' compensation apply whether the worker is full time, part time or a contract worker.
Household employers with workers' compensation
All that said, how many parents who use babysitters or nannies actually purchase workers' compensation insurance? It likely does not cross the minds of a huge majority of these people, especially if the babysitting or nannying is an informal arrangement. However, if it is a relatively formal deal with an extremely detailed contract, set hours, and is the sitter's or nanny's main source of income, then the family may think to purchase workers' compensation insurance. The odds of this happening may be higher if the household also employs other people - for example, a driver, private nurse, cook or landscaper. So, if you receive an injury on the job, never assume it is entirely up to you to navigate the path forward, and report the injury to your employer as soon as possible. Ask if there is workers' compensation insurance.