SILC logo with the text PA Finder to the right.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a personal assistant?

Adviser showing a man some information.

A personal assistant (PA) is someone who is employed to support a person with a disability or health condition. A PA may also be known as a care worker, support worker, care assistant, carer or domiciliary worker.

What does a PA do?

A PA will support with tasks that a person with a disability or health condition is unable to do or finds difficult to do for long periods of time. Some examples of the type of support that a PA might provide are:

  • personal care (bathing, toileting, etc.),
  • dressing,
  • cooking,
  • cleaning,
  • shopping,
  • leisure activities.

Who pays for a PA?

PAs may be funded by your local Authority or NHS, or can be self-funded (paid for out of your own money). For people who are in employment, PAs might be paid for as part of a government scheme known as 'Access to Work'.

Do I have options when employing a PA?

Yes, there are 2 ways of employing a PA. You can advertise for a PA and employ them to work for you. This would mean that you would have to provide them with a contract of employment, register with HMRC and pay their Tax and National Insurance, pay at least the minimum wage, potentially enrol in to a pension scheme, have Employer's Liability insurance, etc. Further information about employing someone for the first time can be found at:

Alternatively, you can employ someone who is registered self-employed (a sole trader). A self-employed person would be registered with the HMRC and be liable for paying their own Tax and National Insurance, have their own Public Liability insurance, etc. The difference in employing a PA who is self-employed is that you would pay them a higher hourly rate of pay (as they are responsible for their own Tax and National Insurance contributions, holiday and sickness pay etc.) and although you might agree working terms and conditions there wouldn't be a contract of employment.

Is PA Finder an agency?

PA Finder is a website that enables people to advertise a vacancy or register as a PA. Individuals can use the search facilities to search for current vacancies or for PAs who are available for work. The service is free to use and you can Contact Us if you require any support using the service. PA Finder is not a care or recruitment agency and is also not an automated matching service and, as such, PA Finder/SILC cannot be held responsible or liable for the recruitment of PAs. We strongly recommend that a thorough recruitment process is always followed including interviews, following up references and carrying out work suitability checks including Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) checks.