I want to know if I’m an Independent contractor or Employee

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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I want to know if I’m an Independent contractor or Employee

I subcontract for Lowes home improvement and they tell me who to contact when to
contact what I will be paid. They tell me I have 2 days to contact to measure a
job 1 day to return the measure to them and 2 days to contact the customer after
the job sells,I am not allowed to do work for the customer outside of the work I
do for Lowes even after the job is complete. The customer can not tip me or I
will be let go. I have to put out a sign stating Lowes installation in progress
and I have to wear lowes shirt or hat that also says independent contractor and a
badge with the same thing. Lowes pays me not the customer. They also send me
paperwork from lowes to fill out about the job

Asked on March 20, 2016 under Employment Labor Law, New York


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

Unless you simultaneously work for other chains or contractors and/or have you own customers or clients, based on what you write, you may very well be an employee, not an independent contractor--and have to be paid, given benefits, have taxes withheld, etc. as an employee. That is because the degree of control you describe is more consistent with being an employee than an independent contractor who, as the term implies, is more "independent" in how he operates.
However, if you work for others as well, whether for stores or contractors or you own clients, that would show more independence on your part and would tend to to shift the balrback to you being an independent contractor.

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