There’s a difference between employees and independent contractors. Be careful not to confuse the two, or the church may be subject to penalties or other statutory obligations.
For example, in usual circumstances, a parish secretary is an employee and a furnace repair person is a contractor. An employee can also work on a contract basis for a short, fixed amount of time – this is different from an independent contractor.
- earn employment income
- work as an integral part of the organization
- take ongoing direction from a supervisor
- are on the parish payroll
- have statutory deductions taken from pay
Term (sometimes called fixed-term or contract) employees are treated the same as employees but work for a defined period, normally no more than 2 years.
Every work arrangement should be in writing. The onus is on the employer to state expectations clearly. Employment agreements should include a list of duties and responsibilities, a list of work conditions and a termination clause.
You can review and modify these sample employment agreements for your parish setting:
- provide a service
- submit an invoice for the service they provide
- have the ability to subcontract
- have multiple clients
- own their own tools or equipment
- assume the risk of financial profit or loss
- act with limited direction and supervision
Independent contractors must assure the churchwardens that they have a GST number and adequate insurance coverage.
Independent contractor agreement
Every work arrangement should be in writing. The onus is on the employer to state expectations clearly.
You can review and modify the sample Independent Contractor Agreement as appropriate to your parish setting.