Has your employer told you that you are being treated as an independent contractor so that no taxes are being taken out of your check? Did that sound like a good deal to you? Certainly no one wants to pay taxes, right? Well, once again, you are probably not really an independent contractor and there are several reasons why your employer is doing this, all of which benefit the employer and not you, IN ANY WAY, SHAPE OR FORM…….and guess what? YOU STILL HAVE TO PAY TAXES, BUT PROBABLY MORE!
For starters, if your employer is calling you an independent contractor then you are not an employee so all the laws that are supposed to protect employees do not apply to you, at least that is what the employer wants you to believe. Laws related to unemployment compensation, workers’ compensation, employee benefits and the overtime laws. Moreover, the employer is supposed to match social security payments and they will not be doing that either. Basically, the employer is trying to get one over on you and the government. So often, as well, you are misclassified, and are not independent contractors.
To be a real independent contractor you don’t have to have a “contract,” but rather you have to be “independent.” In other words, you are using your own equipment to do the job, you can come and go as you please, so you don’t have a set schedule, and you are not governed by employee rules or any handbook the employer may have for those they are treating as employees. Put another way, you are free to get the job done any way you see fit, and once you get the job done, unless you are given another job, you’re done working. You don’t get overtime, but you also don’t get paid less if you get the job done sooner than was anticipated. The issue is “right of control.” The more the employer’s representatives control what you do, how you do it, and when you do it, the less you are independent and the more you are an employee, YOU’RE JUST NOT ENJOYING THE RIGHTS OF AN EMPLOYEE. Let’s face it, if you have read any of my web site you know already that there are few rights employees enjoy, but when you are treated as an independent contractor, you have even less rights, and if you are not truly an independent contractor then you are getting it coming and going.
To test if you are truly an independent contractor or not, get all your work done that you have been assigned, and then tell your employer you are not coming in the next day because you have done the work assigned and to let you know when they have more work for you to do and SEE WHAT HAPPENS! Chances are you will hear that you can’t just choose to not come in the next day because you have finished all assigned work, that you must come to work everyday and they will give you more to do. When that happens, you can feel free to contact me and we can discuss what you should do next.
Don’t get too mad at your employer for this. They are just trying to get away with something, e.g. not paying taxes, just like many other folks.
That’s all for now.