Work opportunities have changed substantially in the last few decades. It is now less common for professionals to work for the same business for their entire adult life. Many people aren't even hired as employees, but work as independent contractors instead. More companies engage in this practice, primarily as a means of avoiding serious financial liabilities like employment tax or insurance.
When getting hired as an independent contractor, you run certain risks that employees do not. One of them is not getting workers' compensation in the event that you suffer injures while working as a contractor.
Even if you carry a good health insurance policy, getting approved for workers' compensation can help ensure that you won't struggle too much financially after a work accident. If you suffered a serious injury while working as an independent contractor, you should speak with an experienced California workers' compensation and personal injury attorney. Your attorney can review the details of your employment situation, as well as you injury, to help you determine what your options could be. Your attorney can fight for you and help ensure you get the benefits you've earned through working.
How does the state of California view independent contractors?
In cases of workplace injuries, those who have been hired as independent contractors have to prove they were improperly classified in order to obtain any benefits. Generally, the Division of Labor Standards Enforcement is the government agency who determines if an employee was an employee or truly an independent contractor. Generally, the process begins with the assumption that the person is an employee, not an independent contractor. There are a number of factors considered, but one of the most important is whether the employer had control over what and how work is done.
Other important considerations include whether your work was part of the regular function of the business and how long the worker has been performing these tasks. If you believe that you were incorrectly labeled as an independent contractor, it may be possible to become labeled as an employee in the eyes of the state. If that happens, you may qualify for workers' compensation. It can be difficult to advocate for yourself during this process, which is why it is so important to work with an experienced California workers' compensation and personal injury attorney when you need benefits.
An attorney will fight for your rights as a worker
If your employer has been intentionally misclassifying you as a means of avoiding legal obligations, such as obtaining workers' compensation insurance or arranging for tax withholdings, an attorney can help. Your attorney can negotiate with your employer or help you work with the state to get the benefits you need after a workplace injury.