Freelancer Rights Employers Should Know

Freelancing, or contractors working freely for multiple employers, has become an increasingly viable options for skilled employees in today’s economy. Small business owners, and the freelancer employees that are hired, have been reaping the benefits of hiring independent contractors for their projects. However, before an employer hires a freelancer, they should be aware of what that entails. One of the main legal issues employers face is when they, unknowingly or knowingly, treat contractors as employees.

“Employee Misclassification” has serious consequences, and major companies like Uber and FedEx have been hit hard with lawsuits for not following the rules. If you are a small business owner and are considering hiring a freelancer, here are a few rights you should know:

Freelancers have the right to work when and where they want.

Independent contractors are not required to work a defined set of hours, nor are they required to work at the client’s office. Unless it is stated in the contract that their presence is required during specific meetings or events, freelancers are permitted to work on their on time and wherever they want as long as they meet your deadline.

Freelancers can take on additional clients.

Contract workers are allowed to partner with other clients at any time. As a client, you are not able to prohibit this unless you feel it is a conflict of interest. (e.g. the freelancer is working with a competitor.) If this situation arises, you will need to consult your contract and potentially terminate your agreement.

Freelancers can complete their work in their own way.

Independent contractors are hired for their expertise in a certain area; they aren’t short-term employees. Employers are able to give suggestions or guidelines in completing an assignment, but ultimately freelancers can work how they want.

While there are many benefits that come from hiring independent contractors, employers should be aware of their rights in order to avoid legal issues. For more information on employee rights from a business owner’s perspective, click here.

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