Alicia is a licensed electrical engineer who contracts with companies as an independent consultant. On her latest open-ended hourly contract for a large defense contractor, she was assigned to work on a team of company employees. After six months, Alicia found herself working up to 12 hours a day and several weekends each month. When she met with an attorney to review her rights under the contract, the company immediately ended their relationship with her.
Do independent contractors have rights under federal and state wage and hour laws? Much depends on the nature of the relationship that develops between the contracting parties over the duration of the contract. Employers often agree to a consulting contract with the contractor, then expand responsibilities and expectations that would ordinarily go to an employee. In many cases, hiring the contractor instead of an employee is a way for the employer to avoid payroll taxes and get out of paying overtime. However, if the contractor can demonstrate that the nature of the relationship evolved beyond an independent contractor status, or if the employer misclassified the worker as an independent contractor, then the employer may be required to adhere to wage and hour laws. Alternatively, if the employer fails to live up to its end of the contract, the worker may have claims for breach of contract.
If You Feel Your Employment Contract Was Broken Illegally, Call Us
If you are an independent contractor or temporary worker hired on a contractual basis, you have rights in California. The lawyers at Hennig, Ruiz & Singh will aggressively fight to make sure you are afforded the workplace rights you are entitled to.
If you believe that you are being misclassified or that the contract is being violated, start by documenting the way the contracting company did not meet expectations regarding the contract you agreed to. Your documentation of circumstances and events will be important when building your case. Contact our offices in Los Angeles to schedule a free consultation and bring your notes and signed copy of your contract with you.
Please visit our Do I Have A Case? page to answer a few questions relating to your circumstances. If the questionnaire indicates you may have a case against your employer, contact us for a free consultation.