Employees Misclassified as Independent Contractors in Burbank
Aggressive Representation to Get You the Compensation You Deserve
My boss recently changed my status from employee to independent contractor; is this right?
Employers sometimes incorrectly classify their employees as independent contractors to avoid paying payroll taxes, the minimum wage, overtime compensation, and complying with other legal requirements such as providing meal periods and rest breaks or reimbursing workers for business expenses incurred in performing their jobs. Additionally, employers do not have to provide coverage for independent contractors under their workers’ compensation insurance and are not liable for payments under unemployment insurance, disability insurance, or social security.
There is no bright line definition of the phrase “independent contractor.” Instead, there are many factors that must be analyzed when deciding if a particular worker is an employee or an independent contractor.
Some factors include:
- Whether you are performing services different from the employer
- Whether the work is a part of the regular business of the employer
- Whether the employer supplies the tools and the place for the work
- How much control the employer has over you
The most important issue is control. Each situation is different and depending on the circumstances, you may be misclassified as an independent contractor. You should contact an employment law attorney in Burbank to discuss your unique case.
Does it make a difference if my boss wants to classify me as an Independent Contractor instead of an employee?
Yes. Under California law, employees get far greater benefits and protections as compared to independent contractors. There is a big difference under California’s laws dealing with wages and hours (such as meal periods and rest breaks, minimum wage, overtime, etc.), and its anti-discrimination and retaliation laws, which protect employees. Plus, your employment status also affects whether or not you are covered under your employer’s workers’ compensation insurance. If you are an independent contractor, you also are not entitled to unemployment insurance, disability insurance, or social security.
What if my employer retaliates against me if I complain that I am misclassified as an independent contractor and should have been paid overtime or given my meal/rest breaks?
If you question your employer about your employment status, about not being paid overtime, or because you file a claim or threaten to file a claim with the Labor Commissioner and your employer discriminates or retaliates against you in any manner whatsoever, (such as terminating or demoting you) you can file a discrimination and retaliation lawsuit because this is unlawful conduct.