Maine Independent Contractors laws & compensation compliance analysis

Maine Independent Contractors: What you need to know

Whether a worker is an “employee” or an “independent contractor” is critical when it comes to such important issues as pension eligibility, workers' compensation coverage, wage and hour law, and many other matters. In some situations, federal law will govern, but the question is most often resolved by looking to state law, particularly in areas such as unemployment tax liability, workers' compensation, and state wage and hour requirements.
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Maine has adopted a uniform definition of an independent contractor for purposes of determining coverage under the workers' compensation law and the unemployment compensation law that is effective December 31, 2012 (ME Rev. Stat. Tit. 39-A Sec. 102; ME Rev. Stat. Tit. 26 Sec. 1043). An individual who performs services for remuneration is considered to be an employee unless it is shown that the individual is free from the essential direction and control of the employing unit, both under the individual's contract of service and in fact, and the employer proves that the individual passes a two-stage test in which all five of the criteria of the first stage are met and at least three of the seven criteria of the second stage are met.
The five criteria of the first stage of the test, which all must be met, include:
• The individual has the essential right to control the work that is done except for final results;
• The individual is customarily engaged in an independently established trade, occupation, profession, or business;
• The individual has the opportunity for profit and loss as a result of the services being performed;
• The individual hires and pays his or her ...

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