I drive a dump truck for a business. I’m paid by the hour; my employer provides the truck, tools, a cellphone, supplies; my boss sets my hours. Am I an employee?
Steve Duggan replies:
The key question in such instances is: Who controls the manner and means of accomplishing a job? In the classic independent contractor situation, a worker is hired for her expertise and is paid by the job. She controls how the project gets done, pursuant to her contract. You did not mention whether you have a written contract with the company that says you are an independent contractor. However, whether or not there is such a contract does not alone answer the question; it is just one of the factors that is considered. I would say that it appears from what you have said, that you are likely an employee of the company. That has significant consequences for the company, in terms of payment for overtime, benefits, tax withholding, social security and medicare, and unemployment and disability contributions. I recommend that you consult with a local labor and employment attorney about your situation.
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