Independent Consultant Agreement
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An independent contractor is a person or business who performs services for another person under an express or implied agreement and who is not subject to the other's control, or right to control, the manner and means of performing the services. The person who hires an independent contractor is not liable to others for the acts or omissions of the independent contractor. An independent contractor is distinguished from an employee, who works regularly for an employer. The exact nature of the independent contractor's relationship with the hiring party is important since an independent contractor pays their own Social Security, income taxes without payroll deduction, has no retirement or health plan rights, and often is not entitled to worker's compensation coverage.
There are a number of factors which to consider in making the decision whether people are employees or independent contractors. No one factor is controlling, and the characterization of the relationship by the parties is also not controlling. One of the most important considerations is the degree of control exercised by the company over the work of the workers.
Restrictions to prevent competition by a present or former contractor may be held valid when they are reasonable and necessary to protect the interests of the other contracting party. Courts will closely examine covenants not to compete signed by individuals in order to make sure that they are not unreasonable as to time or geographical area.
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