Independent Contractor Insurance
Being an independent contractor doesn’t mean not having access to any insurance plans.
What is an independent contractor?
Generally, a person who performs a service or does work for a person or business but is not an employee of that person or business, nor is not employed directly by that person may be considered an independent contractor, or an IC.
Independent contractors typically control when they work, for whom they work, where they work and are in business for themselves.
Different categories of independent contractors
Pays taxes² on earned income.
Pays taxes on earned income.
Vendors who provide services
Pays taxes on earned income.
IC’s may be paid similar or higher rates to what an employee would make. But the company hiring the IC doesn’t have to pay payroll tax for that person and that person is not protected by the hiring company’s Worker’s Compensation policy, though they may take out their own policy. IC’s are usually contracted for a temporary job or assignment with a fixed start and end point.
Unemployment dental insurance options
Whether you work for yourself or are no longer working, you may find reliable coverage for you and your family. You may purchase individual dental insurance from a dental insurance company online or over the phone. Limited options are also available on healthcare.gov or your state’s Affordable Care Act marketplace.
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Cares Act and independent contractor unemployment benefits
Due to the ongoing economic hardships caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the federal government extended relief to self-employed people and independent contractors through the Cares Act. Under the Cares Act, individuals who are freelancers or independent contractors may file a claim for unemployment benefits using their 1099s or federal tax returns as proof of income.
Is an independent contractor self-employed?
All independent contractors are self-employed. The terms “self-employed” and “independent contractor mean the same thing.
All people who do not work directly for an employer in a traditional employer and employee relationship.³ For example, a lawyer who works on retainer with no fixed end date.
Someone who performs a task or renders a service that is designed to be of short duration, like on a project basis. Merchants are also considered to be independent contractors even though they are selling goods because of the short-term nature of a sale. As an example, a web designer hired by a company to build a website by a certain date.
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Independent contractor vs. employee
There’s been a lot of attention paid to the differences between an independent contractor and employee by several state governments lately because of the huge increase in the amount of people who are working gig jobs or working as freelancers. The following table illustrates some of the key differences between independent contractors and employees.
Often an employer will offer discounted health care rates for the employee. However, some group plans may have high premiums and low coverage amounts based on the general health of the employees and the size of the company. If the company you work for is small, the premiums for dental care may not be affordable. Dental coverage may be more affordable through a private insurer like Guardian Direct. Private dental insurance, like the insurance plans offered through Guardian Direct, give both employees and independent contractors access to a nationwide network of dentists so that they can choose the best dentist for their needs.
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Independent contractor advice and insights
If you’re new to working at home or you have become a freelancer for the first time, we have the resources you need to help you be successful.
1. https://www.forbes.com/sites/elainepofeldt/2019/10/05/full-time-freelancing-lures-more-americans/?sh=8b5431072599(last accessed2019 Oct)
2. Material discussed is meant for general illustration and/or informational purposes only and it is not to be construed as tax, legal, investment or medical advice. Although the information has been gathered from sources believed reliable, please note that individual situations can vary, therefore the information should be relied upon when coordinated with individual professional advice.
3. https://www.irs.gov/businesses/small-businesses-self-employed/independent-contractor-defined(last accessed 2020 Dec)