I totally love this topic. This is the one thing you will absolutely cherish in South Africa. Okay, not the UIF contributions, which, considering a government agency is involved, cannot be much fun. But, as promised previously, I will walk you through the process, and it will be well worth it because having domestic help is simply wonderful!
Almost all well-to-do or actually what we would consider middle class South Africans employ domestic workers – housekeepers, nannies, gardeners, etc – and as an expat, so will you.
In fact, you will be expected to, because this will give a valuable job to someone who most likely will support a family of eight with it. As soon as you will have moved into your house, people will come knocking at your door for jobs. This will be the one and only item on your moving-in list where things will progress swiftly, I can promise you. That is why it is best to put some thought to this topic ahead of time. Will you want someone coming in several times a week? Or will you want her to live with you? In that case, she will occupy the domestic quarter, something most houses here are equipped with (if typically not very spacious).
Salaries for domestic workers are typically R2000 to R3500 per month (though I am no authority on this) for working Mon-Fri from 8-5. For a live-in maid you typically also provide the food, which I can tell you right now will mainly consist of mealie pap (porridge made from corn), plus furnishings for her room, and perhaps the occasional doctor’s visit, since there is no insurance to speak of. There is, however, the UIF, South Africa’s unemployment fund. As an employer of a domestic, you have to pay 1% of his/her salary into it on a monthly basis. The employee has to make a contribution (also 1%) as well, but in most cases this is paid by the employer, making it a total of 2%. When you first employ a domestic, you must register him/her with the Department of Labour, which can easily be done by visiting www.ufiling.co.za. You will find two forms there, the UI-8D and the UI-19. Complete both of these and fax them to the number provided, and within a week or so you will receive a uFiling number, which you can then use to set up your online account. After that, you will be notified every month when a new payment is due, and you can pay it directly via the uFiling website, or via bank transfer.
There are services that handle all domestic payroll affairs for a fee, but in my mind setting up a uFiling account and making your monthly payments is very easy.