What Are Your Rights as a Contract Employee?

Contract employees usually get hired to work on a specific project or complete different tasks over a set period. Since a business hires them either on a short-term basis or part-time, they are not eligible for the same benefits as full-time employees.

However, contract employees can still enjoy some interesting benefits, such as the freedom and flexibility that come with being your boss and making your schedule.

If you are a contract employee, you are responsible for paying your taxes and managing your benefit plans, and of course, you also have rights. But what are your rights as a contract employee?

Let’s find out.

1. The right to have a legally binding contract

As a contract employee, you should always draft and sign a legally binding contract before you start working for a new client. This will help clarify your status as an independent contractor not employed full-time by the business that wants to hire you.

Your contract doesn’t have to be complex, but if you have never drafted one before, it would be a good idea to seek the help and advice of an employment lawyer to make sure you are doing it right.

At the very least, your contract should describe the duties you will perform, the project you will be working on, a specified period, your payment and billing terms, and details regarding the termination of the contract.

The right to have a contract will protect your other rights as a contract employee.

2. The right to manage your own business

Contract employees are usually entrepreneurs who run their businesses. Even though a client hires you to work on a project for them, you are still self-employed, and you keep the right to manage your own business.

This means that you are the one in charge of providing your benefits, filing your taxes, and enforcing your rights as a contract employee. If a client doesn’t respect a condition stated in your contract, you have the right to sue them for a breach of contract.

3. The right to control how you work

When clients hire you, they do so because they want their business to benefit from your knowledge, expertise, and experience. They should then understand that you will be the one in control of how you perform your duties.

You will be completing your work however you want to without training, guidance, or direction from your clients. Remember that if a client tries to dictate how you should work, they try to treat you like a full-time employee. You may need to contact employment lawyers to review your contract again.

4. The right to choose when and where you want to work

Full-time employees have to follow the schedule their boss prepares for them. They are expected to work a certain number of hours each day, and they have a limited amount of paid vacation time each year.

As a contract employee, you get to decide when you want to work. If you are more productive when you work at night and want to work during weekends and holidays, you have the right to.

You also have the right to choose where you work and use your tools or equipment. You can decide to work from home, in your private office, or from a beach on the other side of the world if you want to.

5. The right to receive payment for your work

Of course, you have the right to receive payment for your work. But unlike full-time employees, you might not receive a check weekly or monthly.

It’s up to you to decide how much you want to be paid for your work, how, and when. Your payment terms should be part of your contract, and you are responsible for submitting an invoice to your client.

6. The right to market your services as an independent contractor

Another specification you should add to your contract is that you have the right to work for other clients even if a company has hired you.

This means that while you are working on a project for a client, you have the right to market your services as an independent contractor.

You can advertise your services however you want by paying for ads or working hard to organically increase traffic on your social media pages and website.

7. The right to hire other contractors

Finally, if you want to hire other independent contractors to help you work on a project, you have the right to do so. Just make sure your contract states that you might hire other contract employees to perform some of your duties.