People such as doctors, dentists, veterinarians, lawyers, accountants, contractors or subcontractors who are in an independent trade, business, or profession in which they offer their services to the general public are generally independent contractors. However, whether these people are independent contractors or employees depends on the facts in each case. The general rule is that an individual is an independent contractor if the payer has the right to control or direct only the result of the work and not what will be done and how it will be done. The earnings of a person who is working as an independent contractor are subject to Self-Employment Tax (SECA), fully paid for by the worker on Form 1040, not paid by the business. An independent contractor generally files Schedule C, with the Form 1040, and unlike an employee, various ordinary and necessary expenses can be deducted for tax purposes.
You are not an independent contractor if you perform services that can be controlled by an employer (what will be done and how it will be done). This applies even if you are given freedom of action. What matters is that the employer has the legal right to control the details of how the services are performed.
If an employer-employee relationship exists (regardless of what the relationship is called), you are not an independent contractor and your earnings are generally not subject to Self-Employment Tax, rather they are subject to Social Security tax which is the same tax rate, but the business generally pays half of that tax on behalf of the employee.
Pages in the Sub Contractors topic group