Shawnee Love • February 7, 2019
Our gig economy has created the fashionable trend of freelancing and of course freelancers plying their craft across companies and apparently living the dream. However, freelancer is really just another name for worker. More mobile than your typical employee, but not necessarily a contractor. As described in our previous blog, for a freelancer to be a contractor, s/he must meet the criteria of a self employed individual.
Get the criteria right, and you could have a great relationship with a talented worker. Get it wrong, and you and the freelancer could suffer. One horror story I often share is of someone who asked to be a freelancer because he wanted to work from home and enjoy writing off part of his home expenses for income tax purposes. However, he wasn’t great with money and neglected to set aside the contributions to his income tax, CPP and employment insurance. When Revenue Canada came knocking, he pleaded ignorance, and the employer was held responsible for making up the contributions that were missed- both employee and employer side.
Frankly, I have seen this situation play out enough to encourage my clients to hire freelancers as temporary employees unless the freelancer can demonstrate s/he operates a business (with GST number, insurance, etc.).
Need help deciding if your freelancer should be an employee or contractor? We’d love to help.