How ca you determine whether or not a worker is an independent contractor or an actual employee?

Get Legal Help Today

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

How ca you determine whether or not a worker is an independent contractor or an actual employee?

The taxi drivers at a cab company pay the company a daily rental fee for the use of the company cabs, but get to keep all the fares that they earn during their driving shifts. The drivers determine their working hours and must pay for the gas they use during their shifts. The company carries an umbrella auto insurance policy that covers the drivers but it does not provide any benefits to the drivers. Are the drivers employees under the NLRA or are they independent contractors?

Asked on October 7, 2016 under Employment Labor Law, Virginia

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

Independent contractors are, in brief, more-or-less "independent" of the company for which they work. You describe a situation in which the drivers determine their own working hours--that's one of the chief indicators of being an independent contractor (controlling one's own hours). You also write that they pay a rental fee and for their own gas, and keep all their fares; that means that unlike an employee, who cannot lose money by working, the drivers could have a loss for any given day (if the rental fee plus gas exceeds the fares they collect): that's another strong indicator of being an independent contractor, not an employee. Based on what you write, these drivers appear in fact to be independent contractors.


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