Independent Contractor vs. Employee Quagmire

Independent Contractor vs. Employee Quagmire is a practical guide for companies and workers engaging in independent contractor relationships, as well as their tax professionals. A must-read for any company or worker who is contemplating a contractual relationship, taxpayers who are facing a federal or state or employment audit, and tax professionals. If a company treats workers as independent contractors and the IRS or state authorities can successfully reclassifies these workers as employees, this could ruin a business and the personal finances of those involved.

This Action Guide is the product of the author’s extensive experience in representing taxpayers before the IRS and California’s EDD regarding independent contractor vs. employee controversies.

Robert Sommers defines the leading concepts and how the IRS and the courts view various factors in the decision process. He points out the pitfalls and traps for the unwary and includes common-sense pointers on how to best protect the relationship from a later reclassification by the tax or labor authorities. Citations to case law and other legal precedents are contained in full in the reference section.

As a full-time practicing attorney in the heart of San Francisco’s Financial District, Robert Sommers owns and operates a law firm that specializes in general tax. He is an acknowledged expert in the field of tax law and has written hundreds of articles, columns, and action guides, and spoken at dozens of events.


Getting it wrong could bring significant costs and penalties. Watch video.