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Can other independent contractors tell me what to do or take control of what hours I'm allowed to work at an elder care facility

Canterbury, NH |

I work as an "independent contractor" at a residence facility providing care to elderly. I am contracted and paid by their families (PDAs). All the contractors have cooperated to provide 24-hour coverage in shifts. Recently, certain contractors have taken authority upon themselves to regulate my work, deprive me of shifts, even tell me I am on "probation" for "unauthorized communication" with the PDAs. I work for these PDAs and am being told I'm not to contact them with concerns about their relatives care or medication. I have been subjected to harassment, intimidation, bullying and malicious gossip. There are no by-laws or cooperative agreements among the contractors. It's just 7 women working in the same place. What options do I have except to allow myself to be driven out?

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Attorney answers 1


What you described does not sound anything like an independent contractor position. As an IC you are only responsible to your client and you would dictate your own hours.

If you are told when to come to work, what to do, you work on another's premise using their tools and equipment, etc I would say that you would likely be considered an employee under both state DOL and IRS guidelines.

Further, if you work for the PDAs then only the PDAs can terminate you. That is, you need to work out a schedule with them directly and if others interfere this should not prevent you from coming to work on schedule and billing your client accordingly. You ay also have an independent claim against these other providers if they are interfering with or frustrating your contract with your client.

You may want to discuss in more detail with a lawyer in private. Most of us here, including myself, offer a free phone consult.

Best regards,
Natoli-Lapin, LLC
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