Employees Versus Independent Contractors
If you were injured while on the job, you may be wondering if you qualify for workers compensation benefits or need the help of a workers compensation lawyer Lake Elsinore, CA turns to. In particular, this may be of concern to you if you’re an independent contractor rather than employee. Workers compensation benefits are only available to employees. What establishes someone as an employee rather than a contractor? Most of the time this is very clear, but sometimes it’s not and that’s when it can become confusing. If you were hurt while working and have concerns about whether or not a company is liable for your injury and should therefore compensate you, contact a workers compensation lawyer Lake Elsinore, CA relies on at Howard Law, P.C. If you do not qualify for workers compensation benefits, you may have alternative legal options that we can pursue on your behalf.What is an Employee, Legally?
An employee of a company can usually be described under the law by one or more of the following characteristics:
- The worker was hired by the company with the status of an employee. In this regard, the company may have presented the individual with a letter stating that the person has employee status, and includes the job title as well as the salary or hourly wage that the person will earn. It may also specify the amount of paid vacation they are entitled to every year, and the stock options they will earn, if any.
- The worker’s paycheck has payments automatically withdrawn for unemployment insurance, taxes, etc.
- The worker uses equipment such as a computer, office, office supplies and other materials supplied to them by their employer in order to be able to perform their job.
- The worker is instructed how to do their job, when to do their job, and how often to do their job.
As a workers compensation lawyer Lake Elsinore, CA trusts can explain, The Fair Labor Standards Act, Internal Revenue Service, and many states define a worker as an independent contractor based on common law principles. A general rule of thumb is that if the worker has some degree of flexibility in how they do their job, and other factors. Specifically, a person is likely to be classified as an independent contractor if at least one of the following is true:
- The worker uses their own equipment that they purchased in order to perform the job. Examples include purchasing and using their own computer, mailing supplies, paper, printer, telephone, paying the telephone bill, etc.
- The worker sets their own schedule. For example, if they want to take Wednesday off they can do so. If they want to work all weekend, they can do so. If they want to start work early in the day or later in the day, that is up to them. These scenarios are subject to work availability from the company, of course.
- The worker is responsible for paying their own taxes, usually quarterly, as they are not taken out of their paycheck.
- The worker is not guaranteed permanent work as compared to an employee who is hired by a company and has every reasonable expectation that they will always have a job at that company for as long as it’s in business.
Call Howard Law, P.C. to request a free consultation with a workers compensation lawyer Lake Elsinore, CA needs who has helped many clients receive fair compensation for injuries sustained while working.