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Joseph
Joseph, Lawyer
Category: California Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 5299
Experience:  Extensive experience representing employees and management
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Hi, I am in California and have been freelancing full time

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Hi, I am in California and have been freelancing full time for a company for close two years. The office I work in is in Los Angeles but the main office is in NY. I inquired about benefits to the NY Benefits Administrator during their open enrollment. Much to my surprise they have offered me all benefits that Full Time employees receive, including 401K and life insurance inclusion. I was wondering if this was something they had to offer to me legally based on my length of service? The reason I ask is, coincidentally, I was offered the position on a full time permanent basis yesterday. To manage my expectations, my 'boss' informed me that the actual salary will be significantly less as I will now qualify for benefits. He was quite surprised to find that I had already been granted benefits three weeks ago. I have read several articles on common law employees but none that have addressed company benefits. Thank you for your time and expertise. CJ
Hello and welcome to JustAnswer.

I'm sorry to hear about your situation and hope I can help.

Unfortunately, since an employer is not obligated to give any employee benefits, this is not something that they legally have to offer you.

However, due to your length of service as a freelancer and the fact that you were already granted benefits before being officially made a full-time employee, you are in a good position to negotiate to keep your salary the same as it was when you were working as a freelancer, since you already received full-time employee benefits then.

Additionally, if you were misclassified as an independent contractor when you should have been classified as an employee, you may be entitled to overtime wages that you would have received as an employee.

You can read more about the classification of independent contractor v. employee online here:

http://www.dir.ca.gov/dlse/FAQ_IndependentContractor.htm
Joseph and other California Employment Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Good information - Thank you .. that leads to one more question I have if you don't mind. In California, is there a specific amount of time that a company can have a freelancer before they are required to either hire them or terminate the arrangement? In other words, if they didn't offer me the job, how long could they keep me as a freelancer?
No, unfortunately, there is no limit on the amount of time that a company can have a frelancer. A company is never required to either hire or terminate the freelancer no matter how long the freelancer has worked with the company.

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