Personal Assistant Employer's Handbook

Basic information about what you need to know if you are considering using Option 1 - a Direct Payment becoming a Personal Assistant (PA) employer

PA employer responsibilities

As a Personal Assistant (PA) employer, you will be responsible for making sure your support meets your outcomes. This is because the Care Inspectorate does not cover situations where an individual employs PAs, whether or not paid for through a direct payment. You must therefore make sure that you fully understand the responsibilities you are taking on before deciding to recruit staff.

Your local support organisation will be able to support you to do this. You can contact Self Directed Support Scotland to find out if there are any support organisations in your area and search online at:

You can learn a lot from people who are already PA employers, through peer support projects.

Self Directed Support Scotland
4, PURE Offices
Bonnington Bond
2 Anderson Place
Tel: 0131 516 4195

PAs are recruited in a number of ways, often through friends and family members. While some people find staff this way, there are legal obligations which you must be aware of. Although these tasks may seem difficult, support organisations can help you with them.

Using safe and effective recruitment and employment processes are very important. This means finding out about:

  • getting references, on paper and by telephone
  • arranging staff induction and training
  • agreeing a probation period
  • accessing local peer support
  • managing your staff
  • getting public and employer's liability insurance
  • getting employer's indemnity insurance

It is important for you to have the care and support you need. So, it is recommended that you make it a condition of employment that your PA is a member of the Protecting Vulnerable Groups (PVG) Scheme, to ensure that they do not have any convictions which would make them unsuitable to work as your PA.

For more information about the PVG Scheme please go to:



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