Independent Contractor Classification
University Policy Number 2229
Categorized: Human Resources and Payroll
Responsible Office: Human Resources and Payroll
Related Law & Policy:
Federal Tax Code, 26 C.F.R. § 31.3401(c)-1
This policy applies to anyone contracting for services to be paid by George Mason University, regardless of the source of funds. This policy affects payments for services made to individuals, partnerships, sole proprietors, or other entities or associations.
II. Policy Statement
Service providers must be properly classified as employees or independent contractors in accordance with federal and state tax and employment laws. Proper classification of a worker determines the University’s tax withholding and reporting obligations. Prior to engaging the services of any individual, the hiring or contracting department must complete the Employee/Contractor Evaluation Form. Individuals shall be presumed to be employees of the University unless the relationship satisfies IRS standards for independent contractors.
For the purposes of this policy, an Employee is a service provider over whom the University exercises direct control, specifying what must be done, how it must be done and the result to be accomplished. For example, employees are usually assigned work schedules and assignments; provided training, tools, and materials; and have a continuing relationship with the University. Any individual performing a teaching function must be treated as an employee.
An Independent Contractor is a service provider responsible for the means and methods of completing a task specified in a contract with the University. Independent contractors are paid for performing the service and not for the hours worked. Independent contractors may be individuals, sole proprietorships, partnerships, and other organizations (either for profit or non-profit).
Payment requests for services submitted to Accounts Payable must follow the procedure for purchasing consulting services, including a completed Employee/Contractor Evaluation Form. Accounts Payable in conjunction with Human Resources and Payroll will review the payment request and make a determination. In cases where there is disagreement, the Chief Human Resource Officer and the Controller will make the final determination.
This policy will become effective upon the date of approval by the Senior Vice President and Provost.
Date of Most Recent Review:
VI. Timetable for Review
This policy, and any related procedures, shall be reviewed as needed.
Senior Vice President for Date
Administration and Finance