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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, Lawyer
Category: Fraud Examiner
Satisfied Customers: 1814
Experience:  Lawyer with fraud examination experience
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I've been working company past 3 months, as an independent

Customer Question

I've been working for a company for the past 3 months, as an independent contractor, doing solar sales. I'm paid cash, just enough to almost live, but never the promised amount based on my performance. Problems with communication, computer interface, invoicing and tracking since day 1. I just discovered the company isn't "real". Website is hosted on a 3rd party server, corporate office is a virtual office in a high rise in Warner Center. Name on Suite door different than name on Company literature. Secretaries can't reveal info about the company. My boss is unavailable. Company owes me about $3,000. How can I recover my compensation and who can I report these people to?
Submitted: 6 months ago.
Category: Fraud Examiner
Expert:  TheFraudExpert replied 6 months ago.

Hello, my name is ***** ***** I am the Certified Fraud Examiner who will be assisting you today.

I'm working on a reply to your question and I'll be back with your answer as soon as possible.

If you would prefer to speak on the phone for an additional small fee to get your question answered faster, please let me know and I can make that happen.

Expert:  TheFraudExpert replied 6 months ago.

When you accepted employment with this company, did you sign any type of work contract or performance contract that specifies what you are entitled to based on the sales services you have provided for the company?

Do you know the true identity of your boss and his contact information - address, etc?

Expert:  TheFraudExpert replied 6 months ago.

Hello again, I know Just Answer was having some technical issues in its customer response portal so you may not have been able to respond to my questions.

I am following up so I can give you the best options for recovering your $3,000 owed to you.

If you were hired as an independent contractor, you are essentially operating your own business and performing services for the company in question (in this case the company who is contracting you out for solar sales services). When this contractual business relationship is formed, there is typically a contract signed by both parties agreeing to payment terms for services rendered. Then once you perform the sales services as specified in the contract, you will request payment. It is not illegal for the company to pay you for your services in cash. But as an independent contractor, the company who contracted your services is required to send you an IRS Form 1099-MISC by the end of January of each year detailing how much they paid you during the year. The company you performed services for is also required to file the 1099-MISC form with the IRS.

Has the company every sent you a 1099-MISC?

Was there a contract signed by both parties when you began your business relationship?

If the answer to both of these questions is no, my suspicion is that this company is operating as a scam and they never have even filed business paperwork to legally operate within the United States.

I would need you to tell me:

  • if they sent you a 1099-MISC,
  • if you have a signed business contract in place
  • the name of the business and the state they are located in to tell you if it is a scam business or not.

Then based on that, I can tell you how to report them as a scam and then how to try and recover your money.

Thanks and I look forward to hearing from you.