Can an employer deduct from an independent contractor’s commission penalties for paperwork errors?

Get Legal Help Today

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

Can an employer deduct from an independent contractor’s commission penalties for paperwork errors?

Amount seems to be random.

Asked on February 23, 2011 under Employment Labor Law, Washington

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

If the contractor is truly an independent contractor (see below), then the relationship between him and her and the company is governed by contract. If the contract provides for such deductions, they are legal; if  the contract does not allow for them, then the company may not take them, at least not for work done to date--in the future, if the agreement is renegotiated, such a term could be made part of it.

Note that if the "contractor" is actually an employee, then in almost all cases, deductions from pay like this are not allowed. If the contractor thinks he or she might actually be an employee or wants to check the rules for when someone is an employee, the department of labor (DOL) website will provide information about how to classify workers.


IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption