When you hire a nanny, there’s a good chance she’ll be driving your child at some point – to school, to playdates, to doctor appointments. You’ll want to ensure she is a safe and qualified driver and definitely establish driving expectations with her upfront.
Driver’s license – There are nannies out there who know how to drive but who are not licensed, possibly due to concerns about eligibility (for non-citizens) or because of a lapse in renewal. NannyTrack always recommends our clients obtain a copy of their nanny’s driver’s license to keep on file. Also, if your nanny has her own car and will be transporting your child, make sure you know the make and model of her vehicle, as well as her license plate details.
Driving history – Has your nanny been involved in traffic accidents? Been fined for speeding violations? Been charged with a DUI? Start by asking her – then fact-check this by ordering a copy of her driving record. Availability and coverage varies by state, but these records typically cover at least the last three years’ of a person’s driving history. Also included is information about when her license is set to expire. Note that motor vehicle-related civil lawsuits typically do not appear in driving history records, so NannyTrack recommends our more comprehensive litigation search for the sake of diligence.
Insurance – If your nanny is driving your car, your automobile insurance will likely cover her actions, but it’s always best to double-check with your policy provider. If your nanny is driving your child in her car, it’s prudent to ask her if her inspection and registration is up-to-date and if she, too, is insured. And, you’ll want her to back up the assertions with documentation.
Child safety seats – Make sure your nanny knows how to correctly restrain your child in his car seat. And if you are buying additional child seats for her car, make sure they are correctly installed.
State the obvious – Having a sit-down with your nanny about driving safety protocol is a must, even if what you’re saying seems obvious. Let her know it is unacceptable to leave the child in the car unattended ever, even to return a shopping cart, or to “run in” for a quick errand. Ask her to leave her purse and other personal belongings in the backseat so no child is forgotten in the car. Remind her never to talk on the phone, text or read directions while driving. Finally, make sure your nanny understands she must contact you before taking your child on any previously unscheduled trip in the car—even a short one.