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Employee vs Independent contractor South Carolina

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  • Employee vs Independent contractor South Carolina

    I am an owner of a truck which is leased to panther transportation. They send me a list of drivers available to work and I choose one from the list. I talk to the driver & agree to split the profits 50/50. Since the driver is responsible for food,gas & lodging I pay him any gas surcharges that panther pays me. The driver also gets 45% of any money we make added right away by panther on his comdata card so that he can use that money to get by on the road. The remaining 55% + gas surcharges are paid to me at the end of every week out of which I pay the driver the remaining 5% and all the gas surcharges. The rest is mine. Panther does not deduct for taxes from us and gives me a 1099 of all the monies paid at the end of the year. Similarly I do not deduct for taxes when I pay the driver his portion & I give him a 1099 at the end of the year. Also I donot tell the driver where to go or what to do. Whenever panther offers my driver a load he can either accept or reject the load & negotiate fro a better pay rate than the standard rate without any intereference from me. Based on this can anyone tell me whether the driver is my employee in any sense or is he an independent contractor.

    Furthermore the driver has agreed to give me 3 weeks notice before he quits so that I can find a new driver. This is important to me as panther charges for insurance and satellite fees to the tune of $100 every week even if the van is idle. If the driver quits abruptly wihout giving me any notice can I charge him for those 3 weeks out of monies that he has earned that have not been paid him yet? Also the driver has agreed to bring me the van back in a similar condition to the way he took possesion of it allowing for normal wear and tear. If he brings it back dirty & not with a full tank of gas can I deduct those expenses from him. If the windsheild is cracked can I charge him for the insurance deductible (which he agreed to pay) from his remaining pay?
    Last edited by scuser; 12-18-2007, 07:54 AM. Reason: more questions

  • #2
    This is sounding more like an IC than an employee. What you pay and what you charge them for is a matter of contract, not employment law if they are not employees.
    I post with the full knowledge and support of my employer, though the opinions rendered are my own and not necessarily representative of their position. In other words, I'm a free agent.

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    • #3
      So does that mean I can deduct those expenses I mentioned from his remaining pay since he had agreed to it in the begining? Now that he has quit he disagrees and is threatening to sue.

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      • #4
        If your agreement specifies that he must pay, then you have a breach of contract if he doesn't. I recommend having an attorney review the agreement.
        I don't respond to Private Messages unless the moderator specifically refers you to me for that purpose. Thank you.

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        • #5
          Since you've got your hands on the money still, you can always just fork over the net pay due, and keep the contested amount. Then sit back and wait to see if he sues.

          Consult a lawyer.

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