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Contract workers fined Massachusetts

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  • Contract workers fined Massachusetts

    I work for a company that has many contract workers rather than employees, better for them tax wise, we teach English to international students via a virtual classroom so we can live any where in the world and that way the company has 24 hour coverage, normally if for any reason you are unable to do a class for them you just don't get pain, fair enough, no work no pay, but they recently decided that they would institute a new policy and now if you don't work you don't get paid AND they will fine you the same amount, so you lose twice the money, is this legal????? it's damm unfair I can tell you. They will use any excuse in fact to not pay even when it is obvious that it was a company problem and not the individuals. Is there anything that can be done to stop this monoply.

  • #2
    What does your contract say? If it is in the contract, and you sign it, I imagine that they can do this. If they are trying to change the contract without issuing a new one, that may be a different story. Please let us know what the current contract says on payment and sick time etc.


    • #3
      And, I'm not convinced that it is legal to treat you as independent contractors, anyway. "Better for them taxwise" does not necessarily mean it's legal. However, the terms of your contract would apply, if you are legitimately ICs.
      I don't respond to Private Messages unless the moderator specifically refers you to me for that purpose. Thank you.


      • #4
        This is a new 'policy' that they have introduced recently so it is not in any signed contracts, our contracts are that we get paid per class we work unless there system is having difficulty, which of course never happens because they always say it was our system that was having difficulties, they recent told some teachers that problems encountered entering the virtual classrooms was due to a virus on the teachers computer that was detected by the companies IT team?????? our computers are not part of their network by the way we log in to their web page so this is obviously balderdash.


        • #5
          The Independent Contractor law in MA recently underwent some significant revisions. Here's a helpful advisory from the Attorney General on the new law and on what now constitutes an Independent Contractor:

          Hopefully that helps get you started thinking on the specifics to which Patty was referring.

          This post is by Philip Gordon, a Massachusetts employment attorney (

          This post is NOT legal advice. It is for general/educational information purposes only. You should not rely on this post if you are making decisions, and it does not create an attorney-client relationship. This post may be considered "advertising" under the MA professional rules for attorneys.