Employee vs. independent contractor

I got this info from the attorney for the Ohio park owner’s association and I thought others might find it interesting.

There is a gentleman in my park who works as a carpenter. He’s often late paying because of work yet his home and yard are spotless and he does work for others on a regular basis. I don’t want to lose this guy but I can’t handle him always being late. He and I are building some sheds for the homes I’m selling in order to work off his debt but this is a short-term solution to a long-term problem. What to do?

I HATE mowing grass (left coast thing again) more than just about anything I can think of yet it has to be done. My idea is to let him do the mowing and edging in exchange for all or part of his lot rent as he does a way better job than I plus I think he would take more pride in his work than an outside vendor. The problem is workman’s comp. and all of you know what I’m talking about.

The state association attorney asked me the following question:

  1. Does he have a history of working independently? Yes, he does. He works for people all over town as well as doing repairs for people inside the Community. I will have to give him a 1099 at the end of the year but I do that anyway with other contractors I use.

  2. Do I intend to supervise him? Hell no. With a little luck I’ll be 6K miles away in Saudi Arabia making obscene amounts of money. As long as the grass gets cut, I don’t care when or how he does it.

  3. Will I provide anything? I was going to let him use my equipment plus I’d provide the gas but now I think I’ll just sell him all my stuff for $100 and then it’s his to deal with. I have good machines but I’ve gotten my money out of them over 3 years and will no longer need them.

There’s one other bit of social engineering I plan to do and that is, in order to get this gig, he has to buy a computer and set up a simple website for his business and advertise on CL. He knows he has to do something to get more business but doesn’t know how to go about it. Aside from the advertising, you can learn a ton of construction techniques just by watching youtube.

My park insurance covers any accidents such as the mower kicking a stone through a window and my agent agrees with the attorney regarding the employee vs. IC problem.

Hope this info can others is a similar situation.


Wheat Hill