How Do I Know if My Worker is an Employee or Independent Contractor?

A new law makes it easier for you to determine whether you have an employee or an independent contractor on your hands. It’s called the “ABC Test,” and it’s used in many states.








The way courts look at it; it’s the hirer’s burden to show that a worker is an independent contractor. You, the hirer, prove this by showing all three things below:

(A) show that the worker is free from your control and direction in connection with performing the work, both under the contract for the work performed and in fact.

(B) show that the worker performs work outside the usual course of your organization’s business/scope.

(C) show that the worker is engaged in an independently established trade, occupation, or business of the same nature as the work performed.

So now you know why it’s called the A-B-C test. But, what does this mean for you as a hiring entity? Here are the next steps you should take:

  1. Please go through the ABC test with any new hire you’re planning to hire as an independent contractor to make sure you’re classifying them correctly.
  2. Take an inventory of all your current independent contractors and perform the ABC test on them.
  3. If any independent contractors don’t meet all three A-B-C criteria, reclassify them as employees, so you’re aligned with the new law (this helps you avoid future headaches).

Now, you may be asking “Do I need workers’ compensation?”

Workers’ compensation coverage covers lost wages and medical treatment resulting from an employee’s work-related injury or illness, including services that help an employee recover and return to work. If you are switching someone from independent contractor status to employee status, then yes, you will need to get the workers’ compensation coverage.

Have any questions about the new law? Fusco & Orsini team members can help you alter your course and make sure you’re compliant. Give us a call or text today at 858-384-1506.

Thank you for reading!

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