Can an employer determine an independent contractor’s work?

A significant percentage of employers gravitate towards independent contractors as it costs less to hire and keep them in the company. 

For instance, independent contractors bring specialized skills into a company, whereas employees are trained and helped to access the knowledge they need to work. Another difference is that an employee and an independent contractor may be paid the same, but the former will receive other benefits.

However, some employers are misclassifying employees as independent contractors. They treat one as an employee but act otherwise, including determining how they work. This guide discusses this matter:

Determining their work schedule 

Contractors are autonomous. An employer should provide them with a project, and they will complete it with their schedule. However, an employer asking an independent contractor to start work at a particular time or work for a certain number of hours may be a misclassification.

Deciding what they will do

Employers assign employees tasks they should work on. But this may not apply to independent contractors. Upon receiving a project from the employer, they can decide how they will work, provided they complete the project. Of course, the employer can give instructions, but this may not mean deciding what and how the contractor should work.

Restricting them from working for another client

Independent contractors can work for multiple clients. It can be misclassification for an employer to expect a contractor to work for them exclusively. They may not say this, but by determining work hours, it can be impossible to work for other clients. Nonetheless, some employers can ask a contractor to sign a contract that forbids them from working with other employers, which may be unlawful.

If you believe you are being misclassified, it will help to learn more about the case to receive the benefits you deserve.  

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