Hi Dwayne, thanks for your answer. I had a contractor quit with no notice and filed with the TX Workforce commission for unemployment
...and in asking questions about it I wound up calling a federal investigator of Labor
Law...he told me that all IC's have to have their own business, and be short time work. My IC's don't actually have their own businesses, but some of them work for other pet sitting businesses. I don't set hours for them. I forward them emails from clients asking for service and they either choose to take it or not. I do have people that have stayed with me for years, though. I do train the ones who are new to dog walking. I also pay for pet cpr and first aide if they don't have it. I ask them all if they have their own supplies and if not, they can borrow mine (some have their own leashes). I do require they double leash dogs for safety
. I have software they check in and out of, that creates their pay sheets (for years they would all invoice me, but they found that time consuming and complained about it). They send a visit report out through the software we use that goes to each client. I'm just sweating because I don't want this disgruntled worker (who is upset I didn't pay her for taking a day off) to report me for something. I'm not trying to get away with anything illegal. The only reason I've done IC's instead of employees (and to be honest, although more expensive, I'd rather do employees to exert more control) is because of the overnight house/pet sitting we do. Clients are typically charged $75 per night (12 hour shift). Arrive around 8pm leave at 8am. If I treated them as employees, even by paying the minimum wage
, it would come out to a very high number- something clients wouldn't pay. (I pay my workers $40-$50 per night.) If they were employees at minimum wage (which, I wouldn't want to pay them minimum wage, I'd want to pay higher) but using minimum wage as an example, 12hours x$7.25 is $94.25. The going rate for the house/pet overnights in Houston is $70-$90 a night. And 100% of it would go to the worker... I don't make a lot of money from the overnights, but I know my sitters love them, but if I had to treat them as employees, I'd have to stop offering this service.
I'm freaking out because I don't want this person to report me and be found of something criminal, when I do so much for them. I even gave her $200 to help her with moving expenses..I think she came to expect extras. (She did hint the day before she quit that she needed money to open up a 'Cat Cafe' and I didn't offer her money for that...I don't know if that upset her or what, but I feel she could do a lot of damage for something I didn't realize I was doing wrong. She not only wants me to pay her for a full day of work the day she took off, she is wanting to be paid in full for the last day she worked. (I called her, emailed her, texted her that day and didn't get a response. She didn't show up to a client meeting she had scheduled either.) I didn't get a response till the end of the day from her that she quit. And she wants to be paid for that day. I just have this sinking feeling that this one person could make me out to be doing something wrong, and could be very costly.
I pay my taxes, and 1099 everyone, but still have this feeling this one person- who up until a couple weeks ago, was happy.One other thing. in her email to me saying she quit, she put to mail her her last check. Hand to God, I didn't see that part (I was so shocked). I left it at my home office for her to pick up, as she has for the last 2 years. (Yesterday was payday.) I got an email from her that she was upset as she didn't get her check in the mail. She said that she sent me a certified letter saying she wanted it mailed to her. (I didn't get a certified letter...but that doesn't mean she didn't send it; our mail system is less than to be desired. Last summer I got a slip saying I had certified mail, and when I went to the post office, they couldn't find it). She emailed me her bank account number and said I must direct deposit it into her bank today. I went today to do that and they said since her signature wasn't on the back, they would have to place a 7 day hold. Hopefully, this won't be my fault. I'm running around like crazy, understaffed and in a huge bind as I have to cover her (she was doing office managing) and correct accounting errors she caused...it's a mess to sort out.One more piece of information. I had her sign a contract as an IC at the end of September that was a 90 day probationary period, with possibility of a raise after that time. She had made accounting errors and turned away clients, so I didn't do the raise. We didn't sign an extension of anything. She wanted to keep working- but she worked from home and kind of did her own hours.
Again, it all stemmed from me investigating whether or not I would have to pay her unemployment....
Thanks for your help.