Employee, contractor, independent contractor, freelancer – these are a few of the classifications given to workers in the United States. Classifying workers is important because it impacts what laws are applicable to them, such as workers’ compensation benefits.
Not only may workers find it difficult to access benefits they expected to qualify for, but they may also find themselves restricted, owing money, or unable to apply for benefits if they are injured at work. Let’s take a closer look at misclassification and what that means for injured workers.
There are a few industries in the U.S. that are more prone to misclassifying workers. These include:
- Home Health
- Child Care
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has guidelines that can be used to determine how a worker is classified. The guidelines use a set of 20 factors, which fall into three categories – financial control, behavioral control, and the relationship (employer-employee, etc.).
What to Do if You Have Been Misclassified
If you determine that you are a misclassified employee, your first step is making sure that you are properly classified going forward. Discuss the misclassification with your employer or supervisor, or the company that contracted you, and have your classification corrected.
If you have been injured at work and are a misclassified employee, you may also find it helpful to contact a workers’ compensation attorney before taking any action. You don’t want to risk jeopardizing benefits that you are entitled to, including workers’ compensation benefits that could help cover the cost of your medical expenses, any lost wages, and more.
To find out more about misclassified employees and what you can do to protect your legal rights, contact the Law Offices of George S. Henderson. We can help you understand and protect your legal rights.