Can I receive unemployment if worked as a 1099 contractor?

Asked over 3 years ago - West Chicago, IL

I have worked a company for a year as a 1099 contractor which is the only option that the employer offered but didn't sign a contract with them. I filed for unemployment in case something happens. Anyway I received a letter from unemployment stating that I was ineligible but they added my wages that I earned manually. I did earned wages as a W-2 employee from January-May 2010. Will I be able to receive unemployment of some type

Additional information

I am not paid W-2 and I did not sign a contract with the company and been with them for over a year. I do fill out a timesheet every week at the client site.

Attorney answers (2)

  1. Stephen Samuel Messutta

    Contributor Level 16

    Answered . It also may depend on how you reported your taxes. For example, if you received a 1099 for ALL of 2010 and reported the 1099 income on a 1040 Schedule "C", you basically agreed you were not a W-2 employee. (Normally you can't file tax returns with a 1099 and try to show them on 1040 Line 1 "wages and salaries" - for that you need the W-2). If you received BOTH a 1099 for part of 2010 and a W-2 for the rest of it, that may be a different story. The question is, like the other answer, what happened that you suddenly were converted from a W-2 employee to a 1099 independent contractor after 5 months as a W-2 employee. Normally that can NOT be done unless you were misclassified as W-2 to begin with. There are many benefits to 1099 that W-2 wage earners don't get, including the ability to effectively expense off a lot more things, thus reducing your tax liability. The problem as you have now found, is that unemployment insurance is not for 1099 people, and that is part of the trade-off. Someone will have to review your income tax returns with you and see how and why you were converted from W-2 to 1099 to help sort through this. While a tax lawyer per se may not be necessary, you should at least see a reputable tax preparer if you did your own returns.....

  2. Jason T Brown


    Contributor Level 13

    Answered . The most critical factor is whether the company correctly classified you as a 1099 versus a W-2. If you were misclassified you have many different rights against the company so you should speak with a firm such as ours that offers free confidential consultations. Best of luck. Blau, Brown & Leonard, LLC (800) 9100-LAW.

    Please note by answering this question there is no attorney-client relationship formed. I am not your attorney.... more

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