As service providers, it’s not always possible for us to do a hundred percent of the work that needs to be done. We need assistance and associates and people to help us. Legally speaking, there are so many rules that cover relationships with workers.
Employment law is a huge body of state and federal law and, that’s not even talking about tax law, and I know it can be overwhelming and daunting for small businesses to deal with. For now i want you to think about your relationships with your workers in two ways.
The first way is the traditional typical way you would think about your your worker, and that covers topics such as whether to classify the worker as an employee or an independent contractor, how much to pay them, how often, what are the hours worked, what are their responsibilities and duties and so forth. It’s the typical stuff that you think about.
The second way that I want you to think about your relationship with your workers may not have crossed your mind, and this deals with your relationship with your clients and what you need to do to protect your clients. So for example many times as service professionals we are dealing with information of our clients that is sensitive or confidential in nature.
Our workers have knowledge of this information or they at least have access to it. So what do we need to do to protect this information and meet the obligations we have to our clients. Another issue you think about is the creations that we make for our clients, and if our workers are the ones that are making those creations how do we transfer that ownership from the worker to the to the client, because that’s what they’re paying us for. So that depends, it depends on the circumstances.
Another one we hear most often is what happens when the relationship ends? Does that worker have the right to continue contact with your clients for whatever reason that might be? Do they have the right to keep certain materials? What is the relationship, and what are the expectations and the rules for when that relationship ends.
The questions to all these answers are never a one-size-fits-all solution. It all depends on the circumstances, your circumstances, for each and every worker. So the process starts with you becoming aware of what needs to be done, what rules need to be put in place, what responsibilities do you have that should be covered in your contracts with your workers.
The next steps are for you to define those responsibilities in your contract, and if you need our help with that, we’d be happy to talk to you. Just give us a call at our office at 904-860-3111 or feel free to take a look around our website. We’ve got lots of resources.