Employee or “Independent” Contractor?

Many individuals are improperly classified as an employee or independent contractor.  If you are paid on a Form 1099 as an independent contractor, you might still be an employee – even if you’ve worked that way for years.  That’s because the law looks beyond labels and examines the reality of the work relationship.  In our practice, we see many employers deny workers overtime, health benefits, and 401(k) plans by paying them on a 1099 – even though these “independent contractors” are really controlled employees.  In the eyes of a law, even an “independent” contractor is an employee if he or she is controlled or integrated into the workplace.

When you spend most of your time or earn most of your money from one company while that company retains some control over how you perform your work, then you are an employee entitled to the privileges and protections that other employees receive: overtime, health benefits, retirement plans, and freedom from discrimination or retaliation due to whistle-blowing.  Contact us if you believe your employer is wrongfully classifying you as a contractor.  You may have a claim under the Wage and Hour Law, the Law Against Discrimination, the Conscientious Employee Protection Act, or other law.

For more information, read Employee vs. Independent Contractor: Employer Misclassification.

March 3, 2010  Paul Castronovo – Castronovo & McKinney, LLC – Unpaid Overtime Attorneys