Strategies, Challenges, and Answers

Nevada’s new Independent Contractor statute helps protect a driver’s owner-operator status.

Woman driver with her commercial 18-wheeler   deisel semi truck.The opportunity to own and run your own business is a cherished part of the American dream.  For many people driving their own tractor-trailer and operating their own trucking company is a great way to realize that dream.  However, many regulators and courts are regularly destroying that dream by trying to classifying every driver as an employee of a big trucking firm for which they are hauling at the time.

However, Nevada has always honored and admired the entrepreneurial spirit of individuals with big dreams.  In its most recent legislative session, Nevada has given those who prefer to work for themselves, enforceable guidelines that they can follow to protect their independent contractor status.  Senate Bill 224 says that a person is presumed to be an independent contractor if he meets the first two requirements and three of the last five requirements.

  1. The person must have an Federal Employer Identification Number or a SSN with a federal tax filings as self-employed, and
  2. The person must have obtained all necessary licenses, and
  3. The person must meet three of the last five items:
    1. The person must have control over the means and manner to control the work;
    2. The person has control over the time in which the work is performed;
    3. The person is not required to work for one principal;
    4. The person is free to hire other employees to assist in the work;
    5. The person contributes a substantial investment of capital in the business.

It seems like an independent contract driver and or a trucking company that hopes to operate using an independent contractor model will readily be able to create a relationship that will satisfy these requirements.  In fact, at the 2015 ATA General Counsel Forum, this new Nevada statute was hailed as a bright light on the horizon for drivers and companies that hope to establish and maintain an independent contract relationship.

If you have questions about whether your Independent Contractor Agreement satisfies these requirements, don’t hesitate to contact Mike Mills at Mills & Associates at 702-240-6060×114.  He will be glad to consult with you.