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Patrick, Esq.
Patrick, Esq., Lawyer
Category: California Employment Law
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Experience:  Significant experience in all areas of employment law.
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Are independent contractors subject to either state (CA) or

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Are independent contractors subject to either state (CA) or federal minimum wage laws?
Good morning and thank you for entrusting me to answer your question. I will do everything I can to assist you.

Independent contractors indeed are not entitled to minimum wage, nor are they entitled to overtime, or the vast majority of other statutory protections afforded to employees through the Labor Code. The sole remedy for a contractor who has not been paid pursunt to the terms of his or her agreement is to sue for breach of contract in civil court.

Because of the significant difference between the rights of contractors and employees, the Labor Board and IRS closely scrutinize contractor relatioships to ensure that such workers have been properly classified and that their employer is not using contractor classification simply to avoid paying minimum wage, overtime, etc.

In order to be properly classified as a contractor, the worker must retain significant control over the means by which they perform their work. See here for more information as well as the IRS Form SS-8, which asks a series of questions to help employers determine whether a worker is properly classified as an employee or contractor:

If you would like to discuss the distinction between contractors and employees in further detail, please do not hesitate to let me know. If this addresses your concern, I would be most greatful for a positive rating of my service so that I may receive credit for assisting you.

Very best wishes to you and thank you so much for coming to Just Answer.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thank you for your speedy response & for the IRS link. I am a disabled home business owner about to use an independent contractor. I believe I've already fulfilled the IC requirements. She told me her available hours & we agreed on a schedule. We compromised on an hourly fee. She is free to stop at any time. She will be working part-time, setting up and organizing my office, as well as general cleaning duties (dusting, de-cluttering, etc.). You don't need to reply unless I've gotten something terribly wrong. Thanks for your help.


Thank you for your response. It sounds like you have a good foundation for an independent contractor relationship, since you are allowing her to retain a lot of flexibility with her schedule and, it seems, that she will have a lot of discretion with regard to how she chooses to perform her work.

Think of the relationship you would have with a housekeeper who comes over for weekly cleanings. That's the sort of relationship you want to have with this individual in order to ensure that IC classification remains proper. By that, I mean a hands-off approach in which your worker retains signiciant autonomy. It would seem you are on the right track.

Again, please feel free to let me know if you have any further concerns. If I have answered your question, I would be very grateful for a positive rating of my service so that I may receive credit for assisting you.

Kindest regards.
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