Terms and conditions

Sitters is a childcare provision introduction agency, trading as a division of 288 Group Ltd of 288 House, 1 Aston Way, Poole, BH12 4FE. For the purposes of these Terms and Conditions, persons booked to provide childcare services through Sitters are referred to as Childcarers and persons who contract with Sitters for the purpose of being introduced to childcare providers through Sitters are referred to as Clients.

Scope of Service

Sitters acts as an introduction and booking agency providing carefully vetted, experienced childcare professionals, Sitters does not employ the Childcarers booked by Clients.

Sitters provides childcarer introduction services and will endeavour to introduce to the Client, Childcarers on Sitters' register. Sitters undertakes to ensure that all Childcarers on the register have been carefully selected and have demonstrated satisfactory previous experience in childcare employment.

The Client accepts that no amount of reference checking can provide a guarantee of future performance by individual Childcarers.  Sitters cannot be held accountable for negligence on the part of a Childcarer who has provided Sitters with satisfactory references except where reasonable care has not been taken in the reference checking process or where Sitters has failed to take note of other information received concerning the Childcarer's past performance.

Sitters' selection procedure includes the following: A written application by the Childcarer, identity checks by sight of documents and records supporting the applicant's identity, followed by a face-to-face or telephone interview. References are taken and Sitters requires that a minimum of two childcare references are verified verbally to allow referees to give a more full, frank and candid picture in discussion than they would when asked to provide information in writing. The application and notes of the references received are reviewed, approved and signed off by the Sitters Recruitment Manager before each Childcarer is admitted to Sitters' register.

The average age of Childcarers on Sitters' register is mid-thirties and most have worked in childcare for many years. It is often not possible for Sitters to contact every parent that each Childcarer has provided childcare services to over an extended career.

Sitters will always use its best endeavours to fill a booking providing a minimum of two hours' notice is given.  Wherever possible Sitters will ensure that the Client's bookings are offered to their preferred Childcarers first. The Client accepts that Childcarers on Sitters register are free agents and Sitters is not able to require any particular individual to work at any time or for any particular Client.

The following terms and conditions apply:

Fees

1. The Client pays a membership subscription of £14.95 per quarter, in return the Client is permitted to book Childcarers on Sitters' Register to provide childcare services to the Client.

2. A booking is defined as a scheduled start and finish time within a 24 hour period. On each booking Sitters charges a booking fee for finding a Childcarer for the Client. A booking fee falls due once the booking has been filled and the name of the Childcarer is confirmed to the parent.

3. The current scale of booking fees is as follows: For standard evening babysitting bookings starting after 6pm at the parent's home address - £4. For short notice bookings with less than 36 hours' notice - £6. For bookings starting before 6pm, which include an element of day-care - £6. For bookings at a hotel or other temporary address - £6. For long bookings of 8 to 24 hours - £8.

4. Booking and membership fees are inclusive of VAT at the prevailing rate.

5. Memberships renew on a quarterly basis automatically unless we receive email notification to cancel a membership at enquiries@sitters.co.uk.  Membership cancellations are always acknowledged by email and are effective on receipt.

6. Sitters undertakes to give the Client a minimum of 90 days' notice of any change in membership or booking fees via our website, unless such a change is due to a change in VAT. The Client may cancel their membership of Sitters at any time without penalty.

Conditions

1. In paying a membership fee the Client undertakes to make all bookings with Childcarers through Sitters. Private approaches to Childcarers are not permitted without the agreement of Sitters. If a Client is found to have made an offer of childcare employment to an Childcarer beyond the scope of the original booking made through Sitters the Client's membership will be cancelled with immediate effect. No refund of membership fees paid will be made and no further bookings will be accepted. The Client will be liable in damages to Sitters to compensate Sitters in respect of all past present and future losses which Sitters suffers by reason of any breach of the undertaking above to a maximum sum of £1000. If you wish to employ a specific childcarer originally introduced by Sitters on a long term or regular basis, Sitters should be notified in advance. If such an arrangement is to be made Sitters will charge an introduction fee calculated as the average of Sitters daily booking fees and ten percent of prospective earnings - both calculated for the duration of the employment up to six months.

2. References given by Childcarers are verified with the referees verbally as Sitters believes referees give a more full, frank and candid picture in discussion than they would if asked to provide information in writing.  For this reason Sitters cannot normally provide copies of written references.

3. The Client accepts that Sitters' responsibility is to introduce Childcarers who have demonstrated previous satisfactory professional childcare experience and service provision.

4. The Client is responsible for ensuring the Childcarer clearly understands any special needs of the Client's children.

5. Sitters has no responsibility for a Childcarer's acts or omissions except where these could reasonably have been identifiable from Sitters selection procedure or as a result of other information received by Sitters.  If during a booking, any accidental damage occurs to the Client's property or possessions, this will need to be covered by the Client's own home insurance policy. 

6. In the event that a Childcarer is booked and for reasons beyond the agency's control the Childcarer cancels at short notice or fails to arrive at the appointed time the agency will use its best endeavours to find another Childcarer for the Client. In the event that it is not possible to refill the booking no booking fee will be charged and a refund of a proportion of the Client's membership or an extension of their membership will be offered.

7. The agency is not responsible for any loss suffered as a result of the Childcarer's failure to keep the appointment except where Sitters has failed to use reasonable care in confirming the details of the appointment with the Childcarer.

8. While a Childcarer is providing services for a Client from an introduction made by Sitters the Client undertakes to reimburse Sitters fully for all costs, claims, damages, and liabilities whatsoever arising from the Client's wrong doing or negligence.

9. Sitters reserves the right to terminate any membership either when the current paid membership expires or by giving the Client 14 days notice and a refund of any un-expired membership fee.

10. Sitters Clients accept that we may communicate with them by email, text message or phone in relation to any matter concerning childcare bookings made by the Client and periodically with news about Sitters services. Apart from in the course of arranging your childcare provision Sitters will keep your email address, phone number and other personal data confidential at all times.

11. In case of any dispute English law shall apply.  

v.04/16.