Skip to comments.Advice on Contracting
Posted on 05/12/2005 9:25:28 PM PDT by Lexinom
I would like some advice on my rights as a contractor.
I have been doing contract work based on a verbal contract for the last year for a small company. At the present time, we are completing a project. They have paid me for overtime according to my rate, but have not provided any vacation time. The CEO says they have given me vacation on the basis that one week I was not able to work due to connectivity issues (everyone else was gone) - nonethess I was asked to work, ready to work each day either remotely or on site, and was not able to due to their own network issues. Given the work demanded of me over the last year, I am quite burned out and could really use a break. Instead, I get an earful.
Presently I am on the health plan with a child on the way in the next couple of weeks. This is the main reason for staying. I am not easily replacable - the company is small, and the type of work is not something anybody could jump in and do. Therefore I am not too worried about termination (they would in effect be terminating themselves as the work would not get done for many months it would take to train). Still, if the unprofessional conduct reaches the point where I must leave on my own, could I get Cobra or some other plan that would kick in right away? Baby is due early June.
I would appreciate if you have a similar story to share, and of course any advice...
AM, could you remove this from "News/Activism"? It was intended for "Chat".
Your verbal contract is worth only the paper it is not written on.
Honestly, I don't see where they've screwed you around. Anyway, there's some law that Clinton signed making it illegal for them to fire you for being pregnant or having a baby. I think it's the "family leave act" or something of the sort.
Let the lawyer work out what you are presently entitled to..
Get a written and signed contract
Rather than concerning yourself with what has been, address the issue as it stands now..
Well, first off.....your "contract" is the problem.....
It's my wife actually that's expecting the baby!
This company is well-known for burning bridges. That's why they're still small and struggling after two decades. A similar company started at same time has 500 employees.
Same with paid holidays etc.
Regarding your medical insurance issues. Don't change your coverage if at all possible.
However based on the rest of your post, right after you deliver should be a perfect time to extract an extortionistic type raise from the PHBs. They will know just how bad they need you based on the absense.
Remember libertys are taken not given.
I understand Washington RCW does not recognize verbal contracts.
If you got paid the week of 'connectivity issues' and did not work, then he has a point.
On the general issues - verbal contracts are always dicey. They do hold weight, depending on the state, the terms, etc. I would get something in writing, if nothing less at least get an email indicating the intent and general terms of your employment. However, most companies can terminate at will, and contracts generally only bind them to causes of action and severance packages (Unless you're an NEA teacher).
Think of it this way. You hire someone to build a deck on your house. Do you owe them vacation time halfway thru the job? How about if you hire a plumber. Do you owe him a paid lunch hour? An auto mechanic. Do you owe him a dental plan for putting in a transmission in your car?
NO. A contractor is hired for a specific job (or series of jobs). A contractor is like the kid you hire to mow your lawn for $20.00. He owes you a mowed lawn and you owe him $20.00. That's it! If you give him some lemonade, that's great, but you only owe him what you specifically promise him and no more.
I have worked as a contractor and I have hired contractors in the past. Lots of times it feels like and employer/employee relationship, but it is NOT.
That's good to know, actually. I've been the kind of person that likes to make everyone happy and keep the red-tape to a minimum, but that has been abused in this case. I feel grateful to be on the health plan and to have this work to do, but also feel used. If I'm going to put in the kind of effort they demand, I'll go over to Micro$oft and at least get some reward for it.
My wife is a full-time housewife by mutual choice. She will also homeschool when the time comes.
From what you've said, sounds like it's bye-bye time.
No. I billed for one hour that week - the time I spent in the office trying to make things work after the long drive down. I do not - nor expect to - get paid for time not worked.
Check in your state but the default in some states is that you own the code, they own a license.
On the other hand you might not want to own the code...unless their competitors would also like to buy a license. But that is burning a bridge so it's a drastic step.
The CEO does not even have a high-school diploma, from what I understand.
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