Workers are generally classified in one of two ways: employees or contractors. These classifications have significant consequences for the worker and the employer, affecting things like the employer’s ability to make decisions about how and when work is performed, the worker’s right to a minimum wage, and various benefits. While there are strict requirements related to how workers should be classified, employee misclassification is unfortunately common. If you believe that you’ve been misclassified, reach out to our New Brunswick misclassified employees lawyer for legal representation you can count on.
Why Employee Misclassification Is a Big Deal
As explained by the United States Department of Labor (DOL), when an employee is misclassified, they may be denied important benefits, including:
- Minimum wage;
- Overtime compensation;
- Family and medical leave;
- Unemployment benefits;
- Safe workplaces;
- Anti-discrimination protections;
- Health insurance;
In addition to the above, employee misclassification also leads to substantial losses to the federal government and state government in the form of decreased tax revenue.
How to Know Whether You’re an Employee or a Contractor
In determining whether someone is an employee or a contractor, there are typically three different elements that are considered:
- Does the company have the right to control what the worker does and where or when the job is performed? If so, then the worker is likely an employee.
- Are financial aspects relevant to the worker controlled by the employer, such as the worker’s hourly rate? If so, the worker is likely an employee.
- What’s the nature of the relationship between the worker and the employer? For example, do contracts exist between the parties? Does the worker receive any benefits, such as vacation time? If so, the worker is likely an employee.
Penalties for Employee Misclassification in New Brunswick
The state of New Jersey has cracked down on employee misclassification, and in January of 2020, Governor Murphy signed an executive order establishing a task force of employee misclassification. Additionally, a handful of new bills were signed into law related to enforcement of employee misclassification violations. Employers who are found to breach the laws can face monetary penalties. Additionally, employees who are misclassified may also be able to bring a claim against the employer and recover back pay for lost wages and other lost benefits.
Our New Brunswick Misclassified Employee Lawyers Are Here to Help
It can be difficult to stand up to an employer who has wrongly misclassified you as a contractor when you are in fact an employee. At the Sattiraju Law Firm, PC, we believe that employee misclassification is serious and can very adversely affect an employer. To learn more about your rights if you’ve been misclassified, please reach out to our law firm today. We offer free consultations for employees.
In addition to representing employees, we can also provide representation to employers who want the perspective of a plaintiffs’ lawyer and former in-house counsel. If you’re worried about compliance and have questions about employee classification, call our law firm today or send us a message at your convenience.