Employee vs Contractor
UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022
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Employee vs Contractor
Hello, I will be hiring and training several new tour guides for my small tour company and I need some help determining whether to hire them as employees or if I will have to keep them as contractors. Is it possible to hire and schedule them full-time for just the summer season (i.e. a fixed duration of 4-5 months with an end date and pay them on a per-tour basis as contractors? Or will I need to hire them as employees instead?
Asked on April 19, 2019 under Employment Labor Law, Colorado
SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney
Answered 3 years ago | Contributor
You don't have 100% free choice in whether the people who work for you are employees or independent contractors. If they--and how they work for you; the degree of control you have over them, their hours, their location[s] of work, and how they do their jobs, etc.--meet the legal criteria to be considered employees, you MUST hire and pay them as employees. If they don't meet those criteria, then you can chose whether to hire them as employees or independent contractors (and in that even, probably want to hire them as independent contractors, to avoid having to withhold, pay assessments for unemployment, potentally have to pay overtime and provide worker's compensation, etc.).
The U.S. Dept. of Labor (DOL) has information on its website about when someone will be considered an employee or not. Look up that information and compare it to how the people you contemplate hiring will work and be managed by you. If they meet the criteria to be considered employees, that's how you have to hire and pay them.
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