Can an employee hire independent contractors to work on the same project?

Asked 10 months ago - San Jose, CA

I hired an independent contractor to work on a project and he hired some other people to help out. Now he is saying that he was an employee?

Does the fact that he hired some people have any bearing on his status?

Doesn't that make him a business that I hired??

Attorney answers (4)

  1. Tuvia Korobkin

    Contributor Level 12


    Lawyers agree

    Best Answer
    chosen by asker

    Answered . The fact that he hired employees may have bearing on his status, and it may very well support your position that he was an independent contractor. However, many more facts are needed in order to determine whether he was an independent contractor.

    Generally, the main issue is how much control you exerted over the work he performed for you. For example, did you set his hours? Did he work from your premises or elsewhere? Did he use equipment provided by you or his own? Was he free to pursue other work while he worked for you? These are just a few of the many questions you will need to answer.

    It is impossible to have a full, meaningful discussion of this issue in an online forum like Avvo. You should retain an attorney ASAP to discuss the specific situation and to determine your options going forward.

    Good luck!

  2. Michael Robert Kirschbaum

    Contributor Level 20


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . There are about 20 factors which may be considered in determining an employee/independent contractor status. Who hired individuals is just one of them. The factors may vary in importance depending on the nature of the business.

    There is a legal presumption that presumes a person hired to provide services to a business is an employee. To overcome that presumption, the employer must be prepared to show the person is truly an independent contractor. Improper classification can cause innumerable financial problems. You need to sit down with an attorney who can review all aspects of your business and the relationship you have with the people who serve your company.

    They say you get what you pay for, and this response is free, so take it for what it is worth. This is my opinion... more
  3. Patrick John Phillips

    Contributor Level 17


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . What you have provided is a fraction of the information necessary to determine whether a worker is a contractor or employee. It's a factual determination based on the totality of the circumstances.

    If you are being sued for unpaid overtime or any number of other claims an allegedly misclassified contractor can bring against their employer, you need to retain an attorney immediately. Locate one using the "Find a Lawyer" function above. Good luck.

    This answer is a general interpretation of the law and is not fact specific to your case. Likewise it does not... more
  4. John Noah Kitta

    Contributor Level 19


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . You need to have a clearly defined written contract identifying the specific relationship you have with your contractor which clearly provides he is not an employee nor does he have the ability to hire any employees for you. This can be accomplished. Without have a written contract it leaves all these legal issues up in the air and leaves you in a position of the court listening to what you say as compared to what he says.

    If you have found this information helpful, please let the attorney know by marking best answer. Thank you.... more

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