The procedure of paying an independent contractor differs from that of paying a regular employee.
What Is the Definition of an Independent Contractor?
An independent contractor is a self-employed business owner who works for a corporation on a contract basis. Independent contractors are neither employees of the firm for which they work, nor are they under the company’s direct supervision. Anyone who is not an employee but does work for your firm may be classified as an independent contractor. You may or may not have a formal contract with the individual or firm providing services for your company.
The Internal Revenue Service decides whether a worker is an independent contractor or an employee based on the degree of influence the worker has over the job, the worker’s time, and the kind of work performed for the firm. Independent contractors are not entitled for worker’s compensation. Employers are not required by state law to obtain coverage for independent contractors.
Independent contractors establish how a service is supplied, who offers the service, and how the service will be completed, whether there is a written or unwritten contract. They operate autonomously and are not subject to the employer’s control or guidance.
There are various techniques to identify an independent contractor:
In most cases, independent contractors supply the essential equipment for the work.
Consider the required skill level for the job.
Independent contractors often work for many companies.
Recruiting an Independent Contractor
Hiring an independent contractor is comparable to hiring an employee, but the similarities stop when it comes to salary. Contractors are paid depending on the successful completion of the task at a specified charge, as opposed to, say, a standard 40-hour work week. Compensation for an independent contractor is based only on the worth of the labour, since there are no perks involved.
A contractor will give their own pay breakdown, which might be by the hour, amount, piece, or project. Salaries for independent contractors are adjustable in this regard. Check the suitable area at the Bureau of Labor and Statistics website to maintain compensation competitive by checking at pay rates for someone hired to perform the same work.
How to Pay an Independent Contractor
Before you can start paying an independent contractor, you must first do three things:
An Employer Identification Number.
A resume/CV or an application.
A written agreement.
Before you may pay the contract worker, you must obtain a Request for Taxpayer Identification Number and Certification (Document W-9) form signed by the worker. The form uses the independent contractor’s tax identification number to identify him or her and gives extra information required to finalise payments and submit them to the IRS.
Independent contractors, such as a computer programmer working on a succession of tasks, may be paid on an hourly basis. Contractors may also be compensated for finished work or by the task. A blogger, for example, gets paid based on the number of blog articles published, but a cleaning service is paid a specific sum for cleaning an office.
In either case, the compensation rate is specified in the contract, which might be either verbal or written. However, written is better since all payment information will be in writing to prevent misunderstandings. Other payment terms and conditions should be specified in the contract. These are some examples:
When is the payment due?
What are the payment milestones? This would specify particular timelines for task completion and the amount of money to be released.
What happens if the job isn’t finished on time?
What happens if the money is not received on time?
What options do you have if the work isn’t up to par?
Independent contractors must pay their own income taxes and self-employment taxes. As a result, in most situations, no federal or state income tax is taken from the compensation of an independent contractor. If the taxpayer ID is absent or erroneous, you may be required to deduct federal income tax from the independent contractor’s payment (s). This is referred to as backup withholding.