Florida Independent Contractor Employment Attorney
Independent contractors are not “employees” and are therefore not covered by many of the federal wage and hour laws, including the requirement to pay overtime. Like with the white collar exemptions, however, a worker may be misclassified as an independent contractor when he or she is really an employee. Florida independent contractor employment attorney Robert S. Norell can help determine whether you have been misclassified as an independent contractor and improperly denied overtime.
What makes a worker an independent contractor?
Unfortunately, the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) does not define what it means to have independent contractor status. However, the U.S. Supreme Court has visited this issue numerous times, so an experienced employment lawyer will know what factors to look at to determine whether a worker is an employee or an independent contractor. Just like with the white collar exemptions, it is not what the employer says you are that matters; it’s what you actually do. Independent contractors generally meet the following criteria:
- They bring their own tools to the job
- They decide how the job should be done
- They have the right to accept or refuse work
- They set their own hours
- They have a voice in how much they are paid
- They decide whether to hire helpers or not
- They are employed for a particular project or for a certain time period, and not indefinitely or permanently
Besides US Supreme Court cases, the IRS often rules on whether an independent contractor is really an employee, which puts the employer on the hook for payroll taxes (and may be the reason behind the misclassification in the first place). The IRS uses a “right-to-control” test, analyzing 20 separate factors to determine how much control the employer has over the worker. These factors look at the type of contractual relationship between the parties and the behavioral and financial aspects of the relationship. Analyzing the relationship under the IRS factors is helpful in determining whether the worker is truly an independent contractor or is actually an employee.
Call for a Free Evaluation of Your Independent Contractor Status
If you are being misclassified as an independent contractor, you are missing out on a great deal of employment benefits and protections available to you under state and federal law, not just overtime pay. If you think you may be misclassified by your employer, call Florida employment lawyer Robert S. Norell at 954-617-6017. We offer a no-cost evaluation of your case to see whether you may have a valid claim for unpaid overtime or other benefits.