The Distinction Between Employee
And Independent Contractor

Most workers’ compensation statutes do not define “employee” in a specific way. The statutes usually contain a general phrase that an employee is a person that is hired by another to perform a service, whether by written or verbal agreement. It has generally been assumed that the workers’ compensation system should use the definition that the courts have used when determining employer liability cases. The court’s definition is arrived at by considering a list of important characteristics of the employment arrangement. The following are factors taken into consideration. However, it is important to remember that all of these factors are just used to arrive at a conclusion and none of them by themselves are certain indications of the relationship.

(a) the extent of control which, by the agreement, the master may exercise over the details of the work;

(b) whether or not the one employed is engaged in a distinct occupation or business;

(c) the kind of occupation, with reference to whether, in the locality, the work is usually done under the direction of the employer or by a specialist without supervision;

(d) the skill required in the particular occupation;

(e) whether the employer or the workman supplies the instrumentalities, tools, and the place of work for the person doing the work;

(f) the length of time for which the person is employed;

(g) the method of payment, whether by the time or by the job;

(h) whether or not the work is a part of the regular business of the employer;

(i) whether or not the parties believe they are creating the relation of master and servant; and

(j) whether the principal is or is not in business. The initial determination of employment status always begins with the distinction between “employee” and “ independent contractor”. There are no definite rules that firmly indicate where the employee’s status changes from an “employee” to that of an “independent contractor”. Each case has its own unique set of facts and can be argued persuasively by either side. When this problem occurs in workers’ compensation cases, the court will consider all of the factors and decide what the employee’s status is considered for purposes of workers’ compensation benefits.

A. Defining An Employee

B. The Distinction Between Employee And Independent Contractor

C. Illegal Employment Contracts

D. Illegally Hired Minors

E. Injured UnDocumented Aliens

F. Employee Has Falsified Employment Application