Employees who are unsure of their classification as “contractor” or “employee” should immediately contact the professionals at Nuñez & Associates. We’ll help you determine your employment status so that your workers’ compensation claim can be filed correctly.
If the ‘right to control’ test and other factors establish that you’re an employee, we’ll help you to secure the workers’ compensation benefits provided under the employer. If the test determines that you are a contractor, we can counsel you on other options so you can get the help and coverage you need. Either way, without the correct classification, you’re at risk of being denied benefits altogether.
If you’ve been injured on the job and need to clarify your employment status, contact our experienced Workers’ Compensation attorneys today before you file any claims.
Contractors are generally independent of the person or entity that hires them for a particular task, and are not considered “employees.” In the construction industry, contractors in many different trades bid for and are hired to perform tasks such as plumbing, electrical, roofing, painting and cleaning. Other trades, such as the technology and health industries, also use consultants, advisors or freelancers to perform certain specialized tasks.
Arizona law requires all employers to carry workers’ compensation for their employees. An employee is defined under A.R.S. 23-901(6)(b) as every person “in the service of any employer who is legally or illegally permitted to work for hire except for a person whose employment is both casual and not in the usual course of the trade, business, or occupation of the employer.”
Independent contractors are not eligible to share in employee benefits such as worker’ compensation benefits. They are also exempt from wage and hour laws, as well as discrimination laws affecting employment.
Workers or contractors who an employer does not include under its workers’ compensation umbrella usually have their own medical insurance. However, there are circumstances where the line between employee and independent contractor is not so clear. In those situations, a person designated as a “contractor” who is actually an “employee” may be entitled to the same benefits accorded to an employer’s designated “employees.”
The “Right to Control” Test
Arizona courts have listed several factors to determine whether a worker is an independent contractor or an employee. These factors focus on whether the employer has exerted such a degree of control over the worker that, regardless of how the employee is classified, the worker is considered an employee. These factors include:
- How much control the employer has over the means and methods of performing the work
- Whether the worker is engaged in a distinct occupation
- Whether the particular occupation is one where the employer directs control or the worker is specialized with no supervision
- The degree of skill required to perform the job
Employees who are unsure of their classification as “contractor” or “employee” should immediately contact an attorney, because the benefits you are entitled to receive vary depending on your classification.
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