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Who Should Be Considered as an Independent Contractor?

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Independent Contractor

Nowadays, it is becoming a significant trend for companies to hire independent contractors. Most people perceive independent contractors as workers without the hassle of employees, such as unnecessary paperwork. 

However, having an independent contractor in an organization isn’t as paperless as you might be thinking. Hiring a contractor requires proper documentation that includes an independent contractor agreement form.

You can find free templates of contract forms for hiring independent contractors available on our websites. These sample templates are written and approved by legal experts and are easy to edit, customize, and allow you to embed e-signatures on the go.

Getting into a contract is beneficial to protecting your company’s interests and that of the independent contractor. In this guide, we’ll discuss everything you need to know regarding independent contractors.

Who Is An Independent Contractor? 

Independent contractors are also known as consultants or freelancers in many cases. The term independent contractor refers to a business owner who gets contracted to provide goods or services to another individual or company as a nonemployee.

In most scenarios, independent contractors deal with medical expenses, income tax, social security tax, self-employment tax, and other similar taxes on their own. They are to pay these taxes and manage things by themselves.

There are several differences between an employee and an independent contractor, and each type of work has its pros and cons. Generally, an employee can’t control how work gets done but offers the expected results while an independent contractor has direction over the work.

For an individual to be considered as an independent contractor, it is mandatory to be a registered taxpayer, work their own hours, run their own business, and be free to carry out work for more than one employer at the same time.

They should be able to invoice their employer each month for payment of services offered or products delivered. Independent contractors get paid accordingly and aren’t subject to employment matters like PAYE deductions, annual leave, sick leave, and many others.

When hiring an independent contractor, it is highly recommended to get a contractor agreement with both parties’ terms. The documents help to state and describe the terms and conditions of the business you are getting into.

What is an Independent Contractor Agreement?

An independent contractor agreement is a document detailing the terms under which a company hires an independent contractor. You can try this contractor’s agreement form online to understand what it entails.

The contract document should clearly state how an independent contractor isn’t an employee of the company that hired them. By that, a business gets exempted from any legal obligations to the independent contractor that might be due to a regular employee.

Others refer to independent contractor agreements as freelance contracts, subcontractor agreements, consulting service agreements, general contractor agreements, etc.

Who Can Use an Independent Contractor Agreement?

These contract documents are significant for any business looking to hire independent contractors. An independent contract agreement helps companies stay on the safe side of any legal obligations due to employees.

Other applications where an independent contractor agreement is required include consultants, freelancers, and contractors doing business with clients. The document clearly outlines the inclusions and exclusions of the services offered and other critical details.

What is Contained in an Independent Contractor Agreement? 

An independent contractor agreement has different terms depending on the scenario. The following are the critical components for independent contractor agreements:

  • Entity: The person or organization that’s hiring an independent contractor should clearly be stated. It is the entity that’s obligated to compensate the contractor for products or services provided.
  • Contractor: The document should state the hired independent contractor.
  • Service: It mentions all services the contractor provides to a company or individual.
  • Compensation: Payment terms should be described, and the money paid to the contractor in place of their services is clearly stated.
  • Timeline: This is the period during which both parties expect the project to be completed.
  • Termination: It explains whether a hiring manager has the power to terminate the contract at will. Further, the document should state the prior notice needed to end the contract if any such information is agreed upon.
  • Employee Benefits Exclusion: This clearly states that the freelance contractor isn’t eligible to enjoy the employee benefits. These employee perks include sick days, paid leaves, and healthcare.
  • Governing Laws: Both parties should agree on which governing laws are applicable beforehand if they want to take their contract to court.
  • Expenses: It states that independent contractors should bear their expenses and list expenses to be paid to the hiring company, provided there are invoices from the contractor.
  • Severability: The clause states that if any part of the contract becomes invalid, the rest of the independent contractor agreement is still in effect.

Consequences of Failing to Use an Independent Contractor Agreement 

If an individual or hiring organization fails to use an independent contract agreement, the freelance contractor may be seen as an employee of the firm. For certain businesses, the company hiring an independent contractor is liable to pay employee benefits.

However, the use of an independent contractor agreement guarantees the contractor of being exempted from any employee perks.

Conclusion

By now, you should know all about an independent contractor and realize the utter importance of having an independent contractor agreement. Therefore, it is advisable to go ahead and download your desired contract template form from CocoSign without second thoughts.

Aduragbemi Omiyale is a journalist with Business Post Nigeria, who has passion for news writing. In her leisure time, she loves to read.

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Money, Society, Development and Economics

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By Nneka Okumazie

For some people, all they will ever become is what money can make them.

For them, the power of everything money can do makes everything about money.

They often measure to money and measure for money. They talk for it and ensure it is what is seen about them.

Many of these people have money above all culture in some of the countries the people there have described as unbearable.

In most of these countries, the same reason government does not work is the same thing outsiders are about, bringing the country to a contiguous halt.

Government is all about who can grab for self and interests, around power, resources and money.

This same reason is why many organized crimes exist and several kinds of harmful practices across the private sector.

Money will never develop any country. Though some continue to say money is what is lacking.

Money will never change anything about anyone because if there are real changes at any point, money may have enhanced it but was never cause.

Things that look like changes that money made does not change; they are just more of how money keeps itself important.

For many things done because there was money to do it, they are many times purposeless. There are also others that should be been important, but because money was more important in that project, it also became purposeless.

If in some developing country, someone lives in a nice apartment or drives a cool vehicle, making that individual seem important, the importance of the individual is to whom, and what purpose does it serve, and for what it serves, what does it change, affect or improve?

The comfort that is lived in many of these places is a false peak.

It keeps them there and there is rarely much else to find meaning for.

Money continues to dictate how to be seen to have it, going around in circles, absent of progress, but ensuring participants are unaware.

Money, for what it can, makes people become a sunset. Money stays important using people as tools to itself.

[Ecclesiastes 6:7, All the labour of man is for his mouth, and yet the appetite is not filled.]

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5 Tips for Tackling Imposter Syndrome

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Aisha Pandor CEO SweepSouth Imposter Syndrome

By Aisha Pandor

Imposter syndrome is something that most of us have felt at one time or another. Even if you know you have all the right qualifications and experience to be in a position, it can be all too easy to feel like you don’t belong.

Whether it’s someone dismissing your work or even just casually telling you about something you’ve never heard of as if it’s common knowledge, it can be an incredibly difficult space to climb out of.

Imposter syndrome can be especially insidious among entrepreneurs, who already have to deal with ecstatic highs and crippling lows. In fact, a 2020 study found that 84% of entrepreneurs and small business owners experience imposter syndrome. Many also worry that they’ll be “found out” for their lack of knowledge and ability.

That chimes with my own experiences as an entrepreneur and investor. When Alen (my husband) and I first started SweepSouth back in 2013, I had no experience as an entrepreneur. I’d come from an academic background and everyone at the various startup events and pitching competitions we attended seemed so much calmer and more confident. I couldn’t help wondering what I was doing there and why I’d sacrificed a potentially comfortable life for something I was certain everyone else was doing better at.

While that feeling occasionally rears its head again, I’ve learned a number of strategies over the years to effectively tackle it. Here are five of them.

Remember that your journey is your own

For entrepreneurs especially, imposter syndrome can be fuelled by comparing yourself to others. It can strike when a business that started at the same time as you gets a batch of great write-ups in the press or when they raise a massive funding round. At times like that, it’s important to remember that you’re on your own business journey, no one else’s. By trying to match someone else’s success because it makes you feel inadequate, you’re setting yourself up for failure.

Remember, if you’re making progress, you’re doing the right thing. Many of the entrepreneurs who seemed so confident at the early events I went to have seen their businesses not perform as well as they’d hoped. The same is true of those who raised headline-grabbing early funding rounds. If I’d let comparisons to them cause me to waiver from my focus, SweepSouth would be in a very different place today.

Address your weaknesses

Sometimes the feelings associated with imposter syndrome come about because someone brings up a legitimate issue that your business needs to address. It might, for instance, be something that a potential investor brings up. The trick is not to take it as a sign that you don’t belong, but as something fixable that you can address. Every person and every business has weaknesses. That doesn’t mean they don’t belong or shouldn’t exist.

Remember your accomplishments

Write them down if you have to. Chances are you’ve had to overcome a lot of obstacles to get where you are. This is especially important if you don’t look like everyone else in the room. If you’re a woman, for instance, nothing about your male peers’ maleness makes them any more suited to their jobs or running a business.

Have a support network

Remember that stat from the beginning of the article about 84% of entrepreneurs suffering from imposter syndrome? That’s not an indictment on entrepreneurs but an opportunity. By joining a local, regional, or even international entrepreneurs’ organisation, you expose yourself to people who’ve been through the same things as you (including imposter syndrome) and who can guide you through any issues you might face.

Turn it on its head

Finally, remember that real imposters are unlikely to feel imposter syndrome. Being a successful imposter depends on outsized levels of confidence. So, if you’re feeling like an imposter, you can take it as a sign that you’re probably on the right track.

Aisha Pandor is the CEO of SweepSouth

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Reminiscing on the Loss of a Friend, Dreams Deferred, and Bold New Beginnings

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Chris Ihidero loss of a friend

By Chris Ihidero

One evening some eight years ago, my good friend Steve Babaeko walked into a mutual friend’s office looking a little less than his usual uber-confident self.

You won’t find many people who can claim to have seen Steve looking any less than assured: He consistently cuts the picture of a supremely confident man and his achievements are a testament to how that confidence has been well earned. But that evening in 2012, Steve had just put in his resignation as Creative Director of 141 Worldwide, the advertising agency he helped build from scratch and made a market leader. He would have to start all over again and the future held no guarantees. We broke out a bottle of cognac and toasted to new possibilities. As our mutual friend said that evening, “What’s the worst that can happen? You may fail, but at least you would have tried.”

When Amaka Igwe passed on in 2014 just as we were about to launch the TV channel we had been working on for about four years, it soon became clear to me that if I was going to have any shot at realizing the dream we shared, I would have to say goodbye to Amaka Igwe Studios. AIS was my home for eight years. I started out as an apprentice TV director and rose to become Chief Operating Officer. It was the place that built me. On the day I made the decision to leave, I stood in the building we had just furnished for the TV station, gazed at the transmission equipment we had installed and knew I was walking away to start all over again. Walking into a future with no guarantees.

Like Steve that evening, I was a lot less assured.

It’s been seven years since that decision and I have had an incredible run. It hasn’t been a sunset stroll in the park but I’m grateful for my contributions to the TV and film industry in Africa so far. While I worked for different TV networks, wrote, produced, directed and consulted on many film projects (and continue to do so), I started quietly building PinPoint Media. I knew what had to come next. I knew what I wanted to do with my life was to build a content delivery machinery that delivered excellence repeatedly.

In September 2019 we cranked on the content machinery we had been working on for a year and hit the set to deliver the first product off our production line, season one of Man Pikin, a family comedy series. Man Pikin is my nod to Fuji House of Commotion, Nigeria’s longest running and highly popular family comedy series I was privileged to direct for five years.

Man Pikin is the story of a man’s daily struggles with raising his kids after his wife’s passing. We shot 26 episodes for a first season and recently, IROKO TV acquired the rights for broadcast on their ROK Channels, as well as a french version for francophone Africa on NollywoodTV. It premieres on the 12th and 20th of December respectively.

In Q3 2021, we shot season two, another 26 episodes, and that’s not all we’re working on. But for COVID-19 actually, we would have rounded off the first year of our PinPoint Content Fund execution with 104 episodes of TV series in the bag. That target will now be met in 2022, starting with season three of Man Pikin and season one of a new series. Three feature films will also be shot in 2022, and we will also deliver a digital TV channel. Yeah, we have been very busy!

As I watched final edits of the episodes of Man Pikin before shipping off to our distributors in France recently, I reminisced on the loss of a friend and dreams deferred. This propels me forward as I focus on polishing and further knocking our content machinery into shape in order to deliver a five-year plan that culminates in the production of five thousand hours of content yearly from five production centres across Nigeria and Africa.

Scary, right? Well, that was the dream I once shared with an amazing woman and now I must trudge on scared, but confident that we will deliver the reference point for TV/film content excellence, whatever the challenges we will face, because, like the original soundtrack for Man Pikin says “Every day we keep moving forward ooh ooh ooh, ‘cos someday our dreams will come true ooh ohh ooh, man pikin go fall but will stand up ooh oooh ohhhh, for together we are strong and we’ll always have each other, ah ah.”

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