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Google accused of improperly classifying independent contractors

Many people may not be educated in the way in which they should be classified when working for their employer. The way that an individual in Florida is classified has a dramatic influence over the way in which he or she is paid and the benefits that can be received. Those who are classified as independent contractors are not eligible to receive overtime, which can dramatically affect one's paycheck.

A man who worked for Google as a freelancer is alleging that he should have been classified as an employee instead of an independent contractor. The freelancer worked in Google's Google Play department as a site merchandiser for magazines. He was to be paid $35 per hour, which was handled by a third party. Although he was not classified as an employee, he still performed his job inside one of Google's New York offices.

The plaintiff claims that he worked more than 40 hours per week, but he was only able to bill Google for 30 of those hours. When he requested that he be paid for his excess hours and those that were considered overtime, he asserts that his request was denied. To remedy the situation, he asked if Google would increase the number of hours that were allowed to be billable in his contract. In response, the company allegedly ended his contract.

Florida workers who find themselves in similar situations may choose to pursue legal action against their employers. In a successful case, the individual may be eligible to receive all of the unpaid compensation as well as any other damages that are awarded in accordance with our employment laws. The court may also mandate that a person considered to be in the independent contractors classification should be reclassified to an employee status.

Source: Reuters, "Google contractor accuses company of pay, overtime violations in lawsuit", Dan Levine, Nov. 13, 2014

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