Domestics are covered by the Employment Standards Act and Regulation. These provisions include overtime pay, statutory holidays and holiday pay, annual vacations and vacation pay, and minimum wage.
Definition of a Domestic
A domestic is a person who:
- is employed at an employer’s private residence to provide cooking, cleaning, child care or other prescribed services, and
- resides at the employer’s private residence.
Written Agreement Required
There must be a written employment agreement between a domestic and an employer.
The agreement must set out the domestic’s duties, hours of work, wages and charges for room and board. The employer must give the domestic a copy of this agreement.
If a domestic works more hours than are set out in the employment agreement, the domestic must be paid extra for these hours. If working more hours means the domestic works more than eight hours a day or 40 hours a week, the extra pay must be paid at overtime rates.
Domestics hired under the Federal Temporary Foreign Worker Program cannot be charged room and board. For Domestics who are not temporary foreign workers maximum charges for room and board are set by the Regulation. These charges must not be more than $325 per month.
Registration of Domestics
A domestic’s employer must inform the Employment Standards Branch of the employer’s and the domestic’s name, address and telephone number. This must be done within 30 days of the domestic starting work.
Every six months, the employer must notify the Branch of any changes to this information. This notification may be registered at any Employment Standards Branch office.
If an employment agency places a domestic with an employer, the employment agency must inform the employer of the obligation to register the domestic with the Employment Standards Branch.
More information about employment of domestic workers is available at:
Employment Standards Branch
Province of British Columbia
This factsheet has been prepared for general information purposes. It is not a legal document. Please refer to the Employment Standards Act and Regulation for purposes of interpretation and application of the law. July 2016
For more information, please contact the Employment Standards Branch.