After hours work as an independent contractor.

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After hours work as an independent contractor.

As an independent contractor, being paid on an fixed hourly basis, I’m being asked to sign a confidentiality agreement which states that the Company maintains ownership of any works created while not at work. My question is, would I still be considered a contractor if I’m not actually ‘on-the-clock’? Wouldn’t such a demand break the IRS’s common law rules for contractors?

Asked on June 18, 2009 under Employment Labor Law, Texas

Answers:

J.M.A., Member in Good Standing of the Connecticut Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 12 years ago | Contributor

Parties are free to contract for whatever they agree to as long as it doesnt violate the law or a public policy.  Just because you are called an independant contractor does not mean that you are one by law.  You have to look at certain factors - specifically control over your duties.  Simply calling you an independant contractor doesnt get the employer out of responsibility.  As for the document you signed, you are bound by it regardless of whether you are an independant contractor or an employee if you agreed to it.  I am surprised you signed this.  did you get paid extra money to sign?  did you consult with a lawyer first?


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