What Are My Rights As An Independent Contractor?

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An independent contractor works for a company, but they are not an employee. There are different rules for hiring contractors and each one of them has rights that an employer cannot violate. If you are an independent contractor and you suspect that your employer is trying to blur the lines between contractor and employee, you may have legal recourse. A Midlothian employment attorney would be able to tell you more.

Can an Employer Control When or Where an Independent Contractor Works?

When an independent contractor works is typically up to them. While there are exceptions, an employer typically cannot tell you that you must be ready for work at 9 AM every day or that you must work Monday through Friday.

They also typically cannot tell you where to work from. Unless the type of work dictates otherwise, you should be able work from home, multiple time zones away, while wearing pajamas. You should be able to head down to the local coffee shop and work from there. An independent contractor should be able to pick where they work and when they work.

Does an Independent Contractor Need a Contract?

As the name implies, a contractor should have a contract. This contract should clearly outline expectations, pay rates, when they will be paid, and anything else related to the services provided. If something changes, the contract should be amended.

Can a Contractor Reach Out to More Clients?

This is another big difference between an employee and a contractor. A contractor can work for more than one company as they are marketing their skills to more clients. They can have a website and portfolio up at all times, even when they are in the middle of a project with you. Typically, an employer should not stop an independent contractor from marketing themselves to others, even if they are reaching out to direct competitors.

Does an Independent Contractor Get the Same Protections as an Employee?

Being an independent contractor has its benefits, but you should also know that some of the protections that apply to hourly or salaried employees do not apply to you. An employer does not have to worry about:

  • Being accused of discrimination through Title VII
  • Paying overtime under the standards of the Fair Labor Standards Act
  • Providing accommodations under the Americans with Disabilities Act
  • Providing unemployment benefits, workers’ comp, or a pension

Schedule a Consultation Today

If you are working as an independent contractor and believe that some of your rights have been violated or that your employer is trying to treat you as an employee, contact Passero Employment Law. You can meet with a seasoned employment attorney who can tell you more about your options and if your employer needs to be held accountable.

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