Yes – a nanny can file for unemployment if he/she has been terminated for a reason other than “for cause.” According to Homework Solutions (, “Unemployment compensation systems are established in every state, under Federal guidelines, to pay benefits to those who are temporarily unemployed through no fault of their own. These Federal guidelines insure that from state to state the eligibility determinations are quite similar.”

The following are some eligibility guidelines:

Monetary eligibility: Nannies in NYC must have minimum earnings reported to the State of New York in the prior 4 calendar quarters to be considered “eligible.” If the nanny has been paid in cash and therefore didn’t file any state tax returns or pay the appropriate taxes, they actually may still qualify – it becomes the burden of the family to pay all the requisite taxes in such situations.

Continuing eligibility: The nanny must be available to work full time, must be legally eligible to work, and medically able to work. If you’re going back to school and therefore aren’t able to work, this requirement won’t be satisfied.

Qualification eligibility: A nanny who is fired will pass the qualification test, but even in some situations, nannies who quit for various reasons may also qualify.

We recommend that all our families speak with a qualified tax or payroll advisor to get the proper advice on all issues related to nanny taxes and unemployment.  Our preferred partner for nanny taxes is HomeWork solutions (