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Lawdoctor
Lawdoctor, Lawyer
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 1400
Experience:  22+ years legal practice including corporate, business, criminal, entertainment and litigation
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Hello, I am currently hired on as an independent contractor

Customer Question

Hello,

I am currently hired on as an independent contractor for a company offering computer service and repair in Los Angeles and its neighboring counties. I have been with the company for over two years. We are scheduled appointments by the office from Monday thru Friday 9am-6pm and every other Saturday at the rate of $95/hr and receive a "salary" of $1200 on the 1st and 15th of each month, and are required to be in the office when not on appointments. The company offers a service called Microsoft Exchange to consumers. On one such appointment the customer asked to switch to a new service, to which I obliged. The company, without prior approval, reduced my paycheck by $269.89 to offset this cost. I believe this is a violation of their right to control the end result. The company also requires us to use their hardware and software tools for troubleshooting and wearing company shirts. Should I be classified as an employee and what other tests can I use to verify this fact?
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Lawdoctor replied 7 years ago.
Dear Customer:

Thank you for allowing me to assist you with your question.

Your question is very important to me, but please remember that I can only respond to the information you provide and I do not know your entire situation. My response is limited to what you have written to me and the answer may change with additional facts.

Also, due to site reasons, there are times I am initially only able to see a portion of post, so I apologize in advance if it means that you have to duplicate information.

There may be future facts that are as yet undetermined in your matter, that can and must leave some areas of information provided by me broad in nature. However, don't hesitate to ask for clarification if needed! At times, there can also be a delay of an hour or more in between my answers because I may be helping other customers or taking a break. Now, let’s address your question!

The classification of Independent Contractor for your situation affects two different areas, first is the IRS and your personal income taxes and second is for minimum wage purposes for FSLA (min. wage act) under the Department of Labor.

It does appear that you are treated as an employee rather than an independent contractor and thus you may be eligible for the benefits that an employee of the company would have received. I would encourage you to seek an opinion of the DOL or the EEOC to find out if you are classified correctly.

You can file your complaitn at

www.eeoc.gov

or

www.dol.gov

However, please understand that California is an 'employment at will' state and you can be hired or fired for any reason or no reason other than for discriminatory reasons, so you may jeopardize your job if you push this, so I would use caution and diplomacy.

I wish you the best.

Thank you again for trusting us with your problem. Good luck and Godspeed.

Have I satisfactorily addressed your concerns? If not, then please feel free to ask for clarification.
If I don’t’ answer immediately, I may be off line. If so, I will answer as soon as I come back. If I am online, I may be assisting someone else and will respond as soon as I can. Thank you for your understanding and patience.

Please remember that we have not created an attorney-client relationship, and that my post is not intended to be specific legal advice. The answers given are limited to the information you have provided in your post. For specific legal advice, please consult with an attorney licensed in your state.

DISCLAIMER: Please understand that the complexities of most legal problems cannot be adequately addressed in this setting, and that I am only licensed to practice law in the states of Florida and Mississippi. Accordingly, you acknowledge (1) that we have not formed an attorney-client relationship, and (2) that my post is general information only and not specific legal advice.

Lawdoctor and 4 other Legal Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Thank you for this information. Do you think it would be possible to file a wage claim with the California Department of Labor Relations, and if in fact I am classified as an employee then what amount I could expect to receive over the course of two years of employment?
Expert:  Lawdoctor replied 7 years ago.
It would depend on the benefits you would have received as an employee, such as health insurance subsidy, social security contribution, vacation pay, etc.

I would encourage you to consult with a local employment lawyer who specializes in employee representation. You can go into greater detail and he would normally take the case on a contingency fee basis and or he would be reimbursed your attorneys fees at the end of the case if you win.

I would definately seek filing a claim because if they controlled you to this extent and you were an 'inside' repair person, you should have been classified as an employee in most cases. Go for it!!!

Good luck and best wishes!

Thank you again for trusting us with your problem. Good luck and Godspeed.

Have I satisfactorily addressed your concerns? If not, then please feel free to ask for clarification.
If I don’t’ answer immediately, I may be off line. If so, I will answer as soon as I come back. If I am online, I may be assisting someone else and will respond as soon as I can. Thank you for your understanding and patience.

Please remember that we have not created an attorney-client relationship, and that my post is not intended to be specific legal advice. The answers given are limited to the information you have provided in your post. For specific legal advice, please consult with an attorney licensed in your state.

DISCLAIMER: Please understand that the complexities of most legal problems cannot be adequately addressed in this setting, and that I am only licensed to practice law in the states of Florida and Mississippi. Accordingly, you acknowledge (1) that we have not formed an attorney-client relationship, and (2) that my post is general information only and not specific legal advice.