Independent contractors are people who typically provide services on a freelance basis to other companies or individuals. Independent contractors are generally not covered by workers’ compensation insurance unless they specifically pay for coverage.
Some employers deliberately misclassify employees as independent contractors in order to avoid providing coverage for injuries sustained on the job. Even when an injured worker is classified as an independent contractor, he or she may still have a legal claim against an employer if the negligence of the business caused the worker’s injury since the employer will not have the same immunity it normally would for employees injured on the job.
Lawyer for Independent Contractor Workplace Injuries in Miami, FL
If you suffered a catastrophic injury or your loved one was killed on the job as an independent contractor or an employer has attempted to use independent contractor classification to deny your workers’ compensation claim, it will be in your best interest to retain legal counsel as soon as possible. The Hoffman Firm helps clients all over South Florida, including Miami Beach, Homestead, Aventura, Hallandale Beach, Boynton Beach, Fort Lauderdale, West Palm Beach, and many surrounding areas.
Miami workers’ compensation attorney Evan A. Hoffman fights to get injured workers and their families the compensation they need for medical bills, lost wages, and other damages. Call (305) 940-2307 right now to set up a free consultation that will let our lawyer review your case and answer all of your legal questions.
Overview of Independent Contractor Workers’ Compensation Issues in Florida
- How does state law in Florida define an independent contractor?
- What kinds of jobs are usually considered independent contractors?
- Where can I find more information about independent contractors in South Florida?
Workers’ compensation claims can become very complex when an employer argues that a worker was an independent contractor instead of an actual employee. Florida Statute § 440.02(15)(c) establishes that independent contractors working or performing services in the construction industry are considered employees.
Under Florida Statute § 440.02(15)(d), in order for an individual to meet the definition of an independent contractor, at least four of the following six criteria must be satisfied:
- The independent contractor maintains a separate business with his or her own work facility, truck, equipment, materials, or similar accommodations;
- The independent contractor holds or has applied for a federal employer identification number, unless the independent contractor is a sole proprietor who is not required to obtain a federal employer identification number under state or federal regulations;
- The independent contractor receives compensation for services rendered or work performed and such compensation is paid to a business rather than to an individual;
- The independent contractor holds one or more bank accounts in the name of the business entity for purposes of paying business expenses or other expenses related to services rendered or work performed for compensation;
- The independent contractor performs work or is able to perform work for any entity in addition to or besides the employer at his or her own election without the necessity of completing an employment application or process; or
- The independent contractor receives compensation for work or services rendered on a competitive-bid basis or completion of a task or a set of tasks as defined by a contractual agreement, unless such contractual agreement expressly states that an employment relationship exists.
If four of the criteria listed above do not exist, an individual may still be presumed to be an independent contractor and not an employee based on full consideration of the nature of the individual situation with regard to satisfying any of the following conditions:
- The independent contractor performs or agrees to perform specific services or work for a specific amount of money and controls the means of performing the services or work.
- The independent contractor incurs the principal expenses related to the service or work that he or she performs or agrees to perform.
- The independent contractor is responsible for the satisfactory completion of the work or services that he or she performs or agrees to perform.
- The independent contractor receives compensation for work or services performed for a commission or on a per-job basis and not on any other basis.
- The independent contractor may realize a profit or suffer a loss in connection with performing work or services.
- The independent contractor has continuing or recurring business liabilities or obligations.
- The success or failure of the independent contractor’s business depends on the relationship of business receipts to expenditures.
Some kinds of jobs in Florida are more likely to involve independent contractors than others. It generally costs businesses much less to deal with independent contractors than to hire employees because of the many kinds of taxes that must be paid on employees.
A few of the industries or professions in which independent contractors are more common include, but are not limited to:
- Information technology (IT) professional
- Interpreter or translator
- Lawn care worker
- Massage therapist
- Security guard
- Office clerk
- Real estate agent
- Sales representative
- Taxi driver
- Technical writer
- Truck driver
Florida Department of Revenue | Classification of Workers for Reemployment Tax | Employees vs. Independent Contractors — Visit this website to learn more about independent contractor classification in Florida. The Florida Department of Revenue provides 10 factors of the working relationship that determine whether a worker is an employee or an independent contractor. You can also find a link to download an Independent Contractor Analysis form (Form RTS-6061).
Independent Contractor (Self-Employed) or Employee? | IRS.gov — Visit this website to learn how the IRS differentiates between employees and independent contractors. This section of the IRS website discusses common law rules, misclassification of employees, and Determination of Worker Status for Purposes of Federal Employment Taxes and Income Tax Withholding (Form SS-8). You can also click this link to learn more about the 20-Factor Test the IRS uses to determine whether a worker is an employee or an independent contractor.
The Hoffman Firm | Miami Independent Contractor Workplace Injury Lawyer
Did you sustain serious injuries or was your loved one killed on the job as an independent contractor? Employers may attempt to misclassify employees as independent contractors in order to avoid paying workers’ compensation claims, but The Hoffman Firm helps people in these situations get the compensation they need and deserve.
Evan A. Hoffman is an experienced workers’ compensation attorney in Miami who represents clients all over Broward County, Palm Beach County, and Miami-Dade County. He can provide an honest and thorough evaluation of your case as soon as you call (305) 940-2307 or fill out an online contact form to schedule a free consultation.
Evan A. Hoffman
Mr. Hoffman’s philosophy is "our knowledge and experience is your best defense." He has been a featured author on criminal law issues such as driving under the influence, domestic violence and illegal searches.Read More