16 ways to know you're misclassified as an independent contractor

Employers have to meet certain criteria in order to apply exemptions or independent contractor status to employees. Being misclassified by your employer is all too common and it cheats you out of money every day, which adds up to thousands in lost wages every year.

Many times it is clear that an employee should not be classified as an independent contractor, but as an employee. Workers from every industry are hurt by this dirty scheme: Nurses, paralegals, repair workers, service workers, HVAC service employees, cable technicians, satellite technicians, and many more.

In general, your employer may have misclassified you as an "independent contractor" if:

  1. your employer can fire you, or you can quit working, without good cause and without any notice;
  2. your employer exercises control over the manner you complete a job (when, where, how you do the work);
  3. you usually work under supervision; 
  4. you work for the employer month after month or year after year instead of completing a job when the contract period ends;
  5. your employer or co-worker trains you to perform a job in a certain way and you learn your job from watching experienced employees, or attend meetings or courses; 
  6. you must complete the tasks assigned to you, and cannot hire assistants to perform the work you were hired to do;
  7. your job and work are part of the daily operations of the business and your assignments are coordinated with other employees in the company, and the success of the business depends upon that work being done. For example, an office clerical worker is probably an employee because his work is coordinated with supervisors and other staff members, while an AC repairman hired by a restaurant to fix the AC unit is probably an independent contractor because during and after that project, he will have little or no interaction with any of the other employees (cooks, bartenders, waitresses, etc.); 
  8. your services are for the most part available only to the employer and not to the general public;
  9. you are an integral part of the employer's business and rarely, if ever, offer your services to someone other than your employer;
  10. your employer sets your schedule instead of coming and going as you please; 
  11. you must work at the employer's place of business, or at another location determined by the employer; 
  12. your employer pays you on a set schedule in regular amounts by the hour or salary;
  13. your employer determines the order in which you must complete certain jobs, especially if the same outcome could be achieved by doing the tasks in a different order;
  14. your employer gives you materials and tools needed to complete the job;
  15. you typically work for one company instead of several customers at the same time; and
  16. you personally think of yourself as an employee.

If your employer has misclassified you, learn how
you can recover up to 3 years of your back pay.

If you aren't sure if you've been misclassified as an independent contractor order our free book to get answers. Our free wage and overtime guide will teach you how you can recover your hard-earned wages for up to 3 years back. Call 888-449-2068 to order your free book today, or fill out our online form.