Many businesses engage independent contractors or freelancers to help with specific projects or when they need specialist skills for a defined period. These terms are often used interchangeable, often without much thought as to whether they’re the right term for the task in mind.
In reality, the good news is that there isn’t a great deal of difference. In the attached article, which is a very easy read, our friends at Simply Business clearly explain the difference between a contractor and a freelancer. They highlight that the main difference is contractors usually work on site, for one organisation at a time, for a fixed period of time. In contrast, a freelancer is more likely to work for several organisations at a time, often from home and usually on an hourly basis. Both of these roles are categories of self-employed workers, who pay their own taxes.
If you’re engaging a freelancer or a sub-contractor, or if you’re freelancing or sub-contracting yourself, make sure you’re clear on what’s expected of you and that you’ve got the right protections in place in your contracts of engagement. If you’re not sure or you’d like a friendly sense check, our experienced solicitors can help you with that, promptly and for a reasonable fixed price, no matter what line of business you’re in. Meanwhile, you can always take a look, for free and in your own time, at the guidance on contracted worker terms on our site here.
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Freelancers and contractors are self-employed folks who complete projects for clients, but they tend to work in quite different ways and are usually associated with different industries.