A Florida independent contractor agreement is a legally binding contract that establishes the terms and conditions between an independent contractor and a client or employer. It outlines the scope of work, payment arrangements, responsibilities, and other essential details to ensure clarity and protect the rights of both parties involved.
Understanding how Florida classifies employees and independent contractors can help you ensure your workers are correctly classified.
Understanding Worker Classifications
Understanding Florida’s independent contractor laws is essential before you enter into a relationship with a contractor. Learn more about how Florida classifies and defines its employees and independent contractors and the rights of Florida independent contractors.
Worker Classification Test
Florida generally uses a right of control test to determine the classification of your worker as an independent contractor or employee. Florida’s courts have clarified the many criteria used to make this decision.
These criteria include the following:
- The level of control the employer has over the worker’s service
- Whether the worker performs in a unique business or occupation
- The worker’s type of occupation
- Whether the worker operates under the employer’s direction or is a specialist who operates without supervision
- The skill required in the worker’s occupation
- Whether the employer provides office space, tools, or other resources
- How long the worker has been employed
- Whether the worker’s service is a regular part of the employer’s business
The key criterion is how much control you have over your worker’s work. The more control you exert, Florida is less likely to classify your worker as an independent contractor.
Florida will classify your worker depending on your answers to these questions. A strong independent contractor agreement can help ensure your independent contractor is correctly classified.
Employee vs. Independent Contractor
Florida law defines independent contractors and employees differently.
Employee: § 443.1216 (1) defines an employee as an officer of a corporation or a worker classified as an employee under the common law rules set forth by Florida’s courts to create the right of control test.
Independent contractor: Those workers who meet the criteria set forth by Florida’s courts with the state’s right to control test are classified as independent contractors.
Rights and Responsibilities
Most workplace rights stem from a worker’s classification as an employee. Florida’s independent contractors lack the following protections:
- Overtime rights
- Minimum wage rights
- Worker’s compensation
- Most employment benefits
- Many anti-discrimination protections
If your worker files a claim for benefits, but you classified the worker as an independent contractor, the Florida Department of Revenue will investigate your relationship with the worker  . They will analyze the relationship and determine its classification.
The state of Florida currently does not have an individual income tax. It does not charge a self-employment tax on freelance income or sole proprietors but does charge self-employment tax to anyone classified as a C corporation. Florida’s corporate tax rate is 5.5%.
The federal self-employment tax rate of 15.3% applies to net earnings over $600.
Florida’s Governor DeSantis signed Senate Bill 1532 on June 16, 2021. S.B. 1532 creates substantial reporting requirements for businesses. As of October 1, 2021, companies must report information on the independent contractors they use.
Below, you can download a Florida independent contractor agreement in PDF and Word format: