Employee or Independent Contractor?

Ducking Child Support by Becoming a “Contractor”

From The Texas Tribune, Julian Aguilar writes about situations where workers try to avoid child support orders by becoming an independent contractor.  Julian writes:

Rex Gore said he’s noticed a trend when employees at his Texas-based Professional Janitorial Service suddenly decide to work somewhere else.

“There is a wage garnishment for child support order that comes in and comes out of their check,” said Gore, who has offices in Austin, El Paso and San Antonio and employs about 3,000 people. “It’s not unusual for a person in that situation to mysteriously quit, take their last check and use some rationale about schedule or something else.”

When he hears about the former employee’s whereabouts later, he said, his suspicions are almost always confirmed: The person found work as an independent contractor to avoid wage garnishment.

“Best you can tell it’s probably in an environment where they’re being paid under the table or being paid as a 1099 [independent contractor] employee, and in some way avoiding paying the garnishment,” he said.

Ducking wage garnishment is just one problem associated with what’s commonly called worker misclassification, when an employee is wrongly classified as a contract worker….”

If a worker becomes an independent contractor and obtains and uses an Employer Identification Number (EIN) from the IRS, it makes it more difficult to enforce child support garnishment orders because they typically rely on the wage earners social security number.  By using an EIN, someone has to connect the EIN to the garnishee’s social security number.

Read the full story at Ducking Child Support by Becoming a “Contractor”

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