How to Follow Legal Regulations in Use of Contingent Workers

Apart from whatever strategic benefits the use of contingent employees in your business offers, their growing presence in the workplace introduces some thorny legal issues as well. One key question: To what extent are companies that hire temporary or project workers directly (instead of relying on staffing firms) obliged to provide these workers with the same benefits and protections that regular employees receive?

Equal coverage against discrimination for contingent workers

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) believes that discrimination is discrimination — regardless of whether the victim of discrimination is working for you as an employee on a full-time, part-time, or interim basis. The bottom line is that contingent workers have many of the same fundamental rights with respect to EEO legislation as do regular employees — and this fact holds true for all forms of discrimination, including sexual harassment.

How to deal with workplace injuries of contingent workers

Even if a staffing service employs someone working for your company on a contingent basis, your firm may be responsible for that individual’s health, safety, and security while on the job at your company. Check with your staffing firm to determine whether your workers’ compensation package adequately protects you. And remember: You can always face a lawsuit from anyone who’s injured while working on your premises.

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