It can sometimes be difficult to determine the status of your employment as either an employee or an independent contractor. However, there is no single factor that the Courts will look at to determine if a person is an employee or an independent contractor. The Courts will look at the relationship as a whole before classifying a person as an independent contractor, dependent contractor or employee, and this is done on a case-to-case basis.
How To Determine?
It can be difficult to determine if you are an employee or an independent contractor. For example, a person may own and be responsible for all of their tools but may have no control over their work, hours or rate of pay. Further, there are many misconceptions about how to tell the difference between an independent contractor and an employee.
Where a person agreed, verbally or in writing, that they are designated an independent contractor, is not determinative of the issue. This is because employees and dependent contractors may be entitled to more benefits such as notice of termination, whereas independent contractors may not be.
For example, a person may still be considered an employee even where they agreed to be an independent contract, charge HST, use their own vehicle for work purposes, and don’t have any statutory deductions from their pay (such as tax, CPP or EI).
Finally, you might even belong to an intermediate category called “dependent contractor.”
A person may be considered an independent contractor when some of the following describes their employment conditions:
- ∎ You own and are responsible for some or all of the equipment or tools that are used to complete your job;
- ∎ You are in business for yourself. This means that you can make a profit, but you also have the risk of losing money from the work you complete;
- ∎ Whether you are economically dependent on the company;
- ∎ You determine how and/or where your work is completed;
- ∎ You can subcontract some of your work;
- ∎ The company can end your contract for service(s);
- ∎ The company cannot discipline you.
How Can Law Wise Help?
In circumstances where you are unsure about the status of your employment as either an employee or an independent contractor, it is recommended to speak to an employment lawyer. Contact LAW WISE employment lawyers today to set up a consultation to discuss your options.
Call us at +1 647 948 7819 today!