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Don't confuse these five employees with independent contractors...

by , 30 September 2015
It is very important that you know what the difference is between employees, independent contractors, agency assignees, casuals and so on.

Not knowing the difference can cost you thousands! You could also be held liable for unfair labour practices, unfair dismissal and, on top of that, you could end up dishing out huge amounts in legal fees.

So to bring some clarity, here are five types of employees who are commonly confused with independent contractors:

1. Occasional employees/casuals

'Casuals' are those people who work less than 24 hours in any given month.

Note that South African labour law doesn't refer to the term 'casual'. It refers to 'employees who work less than 24 hours in a month'.
 
2. Temporary/fixed-term employees

A temporary or fixed-term employee is an employee who works for a limited duration.

In other words, the contract states:

·         That the contract will expire on a specified date: or
·         That the contract will end in a certain case.
 
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3. Part-time employees

A part-time employee can be considered as an employee who works less than the general workforce.
 
4. Probationary employees

A probationary employee is one who is working on probation towards a full-time position.

Keep in mind that you mustn't treat probationers as fixed-term contract employees. In other words, you can't dismiss them at the end of their probation period and get a fresh probationer.
 
5. Agency assignees
 
These employees include those from agencies, Temporary Employment Services (TES) and labour brokers.
 

So, there were are five types of employees who are commonly confused with independent contractors.

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