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New taxes It is critical that business owners correctly determine whether the individuals providing services are employees or independent contractors. New taxes Generally, you must withhold income taxes, withhold and pay Social Security and Medicare taxes, and pay unemployment tax on wages paid to an employee. You do not generally have to withhold or pay any taxes on payments to independent contractors. New taxes Select the Scenario that Applies to You: New taxes I am an independent contractor or in business for myself New taxes If you are a business owner or contractor who provides services to other businesses, then you are generally considered self-employed. For more information on your tax obligations if you are self-employed (an independent contractor), see our Self-Employed Tax Center. New taxes I hire or contract with individuals to provide services to my business New taxes If you are a business owner hiring or contracting with other individuals to provide services, you must determine whether the individuals providing services are employees or independent contractors. Follow the rest of this page to find out more about this topic and what your responsibilities are. New taxes Determining Whether the Individuals Providing Services are Employees or Independent Contractors New taxes Before you can determine how to treat payments you make for services, you must first know the business relationship that exists between you and the person performing the services. The person performing the services may be - New taxes An independent contractor New taxes An employee (common-law employee) New taxes A statutory employee New taxes A statutory nonemployee New taxes In determining whether the person providing service is an employee or an independent contractor, all information that provides evidence of the degree of control and independence must be considered. New taxes Common Law Rules New taxes Facts that provide evidence of the degree of control and independence fall into three categories: New taxes Behavioral: Does the company control or have the right to control what the worker does and how the worker does his or her job? New taxes Financial: Are the business aspects of the worker’s job controlled by the payer? (these include things like how worker is paid, whether expenses are reimbursed, who provides tools/supplies, etc.) New taxes Type of Relationship: Are there written contracts or employee type benefits (i.e. pension plan, insurance, vacation pay, etc.)? Will the relationship continue and is the work performed a key aspect of the business? New taxes Businesses must weigh all these factors when determining whether a worker is an employee or independent contractor. Some factors may indicate that the worker is an employee, while other factors indicate that the worker is an independent contractor. There is no “magic” or set number of factors that “makes” the worker an employee or an independent contractor, and no one factor stands alone in making this determination. Also, factors which are relevant in one situation may not be relevant in another. New taxes The keys are to look at the entire relationship, consider the degree or extent of the right to direct and control, and finally, to document each of the factors used in coming up with the determination. New taxes Form SS-8 New taxes If, after reviewing the three categories of evidence, it is still unclear whether a worker is an employee or an independent contractor, Form SS-8, Determination of Worker Status for Purposes of Federal Employment Taxes and Income Tax Withholding (PDF) can be filed with the IRS. The form may be filed by either the business or the worker. The IRS will review the facts and circumstances and officially determine the worker’s status. New taxes Be aware that it can take at least six months to get a determination, but a business that continually hires the same types of workers to perform particular services may want to consider filing the Form SS-8 (PDF).