Can independent contractors get paid for work injuries in Mississippi?
Mississippi Workers’ Compensation laws generally mandate that an employee who has been hurt at work is entitled to financial compensation for their injury. While this law seems simple enough, many claims – and thereby lives – hinge on a pivotal question: am I an employee? While most people think they know their employment status; many claims are denied on this basis. For the first time in your career, your employer is now calling you an “independent contractor.” Convenient timing. Unfortunately, independent contractors are not generally entitled to the same protections under the statute. But don’t get upset too fast. Independent contractors are not determined by what the employer calls you or what any paperwork says. Instead, it’s determined by what you were actually doing and who controlled your work.
If the Commission – the body that governs Mississippi Workers’ Compensation claims – finds that you are not an employee, you will not be entitled to benefits under the Mississippi Workers’ Compensation Act, but you may have other rights under our common law. To make this determination, the Commission considers the right to control and nature of the work tests, which have developed through numerous hearings over the years. These are complex, fact intensive tests that the Judge will consider in making their determination. There will be a hearing on your injury, where these facts are presented to the Judge to determine your employment status. Just because your employer or a piece of paper says you are and independent contractor, does not make it so. You should protect your rights and recovery when a work injury occurs, by hiring an attorney that specializes in Mississippi Workers’ Compensation Claims to present these facts.
If you or a loved one has had a work injury in Mississippi or has any questions about whether or not your work injury falls under the jurisdiction of the Mississippi Workers’ Compensation Commission, contact Chhabra & Gibbs, P.A. personal injury firm at 601-948-8005 today.
Consultation is free. Everything is confidential. There is no obligation. We have a team of lawyers and staff ready to guide you through this process and ensure your rights are protected.