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How do I determine if an individual is an employee or an independent contractor?

For purposes of the Workers’ Compensation coverage, the usual definition of an employee is as follows:

  • “Employee is generally defined as a person hired to perform certain services or tasks for particular wages or salary under the control of another (the employer).
  • “A worker hired to perform a specific job usual and customary to the employer’s business operation in exchange for money or other remuneration.”

The main feature of this definition is the amount of control that the employer has over an individual, which then qualifies that person as an employee. Independent contractors are the opposite of employees and these individuals or firms are hired to do work that is generally not within the usual trade or business of the employer. An example of this would be the landscaper hired to prune or a handyman hired to clean off snow from your sidewalk.