Independent Contractor Misclassification

Employee Misclassification Can Impact You

Misclassifying employees as independent contractors is a rampantly growing trend in many industries, with a particular rise in misclassification of IT workers, delivery drivers, recruiting and sales positions (particularly in insurance sales), and beauty-service providers.

How an employee is classified matters a great deal to their bottom line. Employers commonly misclassify workers as independent contractors, sidestepping employees’ rights to overtime and other benefits under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and Massachusetts labor laws. This practice is illegal and results in significant monetary damage to employees misclassified as independent contractors.

Are You Properly Classified as an Independent Contractor?

In Massachusetts, your employer cannot classify you as an independent contractor unless you meet these three requirements.

First, you must be free from your employer’s control in the performance of your duties. Some of the ways your employer might exercise control over you include: requiring you to report to an office every day; dictating your schedule; assigning you a manager or supervisor; reviewing and approving your work; requiring you to follow policies, procedures and protocols set by your employer; and/or dictating the personnel you use for projects.

Second, you must provide a service that isn’t a regular and usual part of the employer’s business. For example, if you work as an IT professional for a company with a significant IT department, you would not be properly classified as an independent contractor. But, if a pipe bursts in the restroom of that company, the plumber who comes to fix it could be properly classified as an independent contractor.

Third, you must be independently established in your own trade or profession, which usually includes having multiple clients.

If your employer cannot pass all three requirements, you are an employee.

You shouldn’t rely on your employer’s classification. Employers frequently classify their employees as independent contractors to save money or because they simply don’t understand Massachusetts law. Whatever the reason, employers frequently get these classifications wrong.

We Can Help You Recover Wages and Benefits You’re Entitled To

Massachusetts law imposes stiff penalties on employers who misclassify employees. If an employer has misclassified you – you may be entitled to three times the wages and benefits you would have earned as an employee, plus your attorneys’ fees. Massachusetts law also allows employees to recover for any/all violations occurring in the last three years, so you may be able to recover a substantial amount in damages.

If you suspect that you’ve been misclassified by your employer, contact us for a free, confidential consultation. Our attorneys have more than fifty years of combined experience in all types of employment litigation. We offer exceptional representation and are aggressive in our fight to secure the compensation and benefits you’re entitled to under the law.

Have you lost wages and benefits due to misclassification?