I may be out of a job tomorrow

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by jimbobillybob, Apr 10, 2007.

  1. jimbobillybob

    jimbobillybob LawnSite Member
    from here
    Messages: 4

    This will be my fourth year working for the same guy. We do lawn, snow and some landscaping. When I first started with him I was in a tight spot and needed a job quick and he needed help. He pays me as a sub....I know it's wrong and I'm having a hell of a time keeping my taxes paid. I'm in the hole pretty deep now. So I decided that I'm going to talk to him today. I've printed out the employer costs sheet for him. Link I currently make 15/hr. For him to go legit is another 19.4%. I've brought this up before and we'd talk but then nothing would happen. We are in a small town and the other company in town has no openings. I love what I do but theres no way I can continue. I'm nervous to give him the ultimatum but I have no choice. Other then that he has treated me well. I'm on salary through the winter and only work maybe 40 to 45 days in 4 months. A few jobs we have he has lied to the customer and said that I have private insurance when they ask for his workers comp. He told me once to get private insurance and I said if he'll pay for it then no problem. I'm good at what I do, I quoted a few jobs last year and was right on the money. I can be left alone to grade and prep new home lawns for sod. I'm hoping he'll see things my way but if he doesn't I'll have to go back to factory work. I won't leave the industry totally as I have thoughts of starting my own company. I won't take his customers but I know theres more work in this town then the 2 companies can handle. We are meeting at 9am to get the sweepers ready, when we are done I'll talk to him. Wish me luck.
  2. Gilligan

    Gilligan LawnSite Member
    from Florida
    Messages: 37

    Good Luck first of all...

    But if you have been doing it for four years you should have a pretty good handle on things....

    Don't give the ultimatum. I would say you both have paid your dues to each other. He gave you a job when you needed one, and you have worked four years as a good employee/independant contractor.

    I won't go into the details as it varies from state to state...but most likely you are his employee...Doesn't matter what he says...its what the state and federal guidelines state.

    If I were you I would stay on with him and start your operation part time and in the meantime pick his brain so he can teach you the administration parts...if you cant do the part time there then go to the factory and then do the part time deal, if this is what you really want.

    Remember...in the long run its all about the sacrificies you make early on....

    Good luck once again...
  3. willretire@40

    willretire@40 LawnSite Bronze Member
    from VA
    Messages: 1,390

    If you cant do your taxes now then how are you going to do them when you work for yourself.
  4. jimbobillybob

    jimbobillybob LawnSite Member
    from here
    Messages: 4

    The last 2 years were good $$$ years and now I'm on the hook for lots of $$$. Everyday I work under this relationship I go further in the hole.I would also like to have the comfort of unemployment as well as workers comp. I have a family and if something happens to me they will suffer. My write offs now as a subcontractor are zero so I pay taxes on all income.
  5. yardmanlee

    yardmanlee LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 898

    I think its time for you to go out on your own, just my opion
  6. supercuts

    supercuts LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,814

    i think its safe to say if you were making 15/hr it would be tuff to pay them as well, not because you arent motivated but because you dont have enough left after bills.

    i say go for it, dont burn your bridges and dont steal his customers. get your own. it might be difficult at first and i dont know how small your town is, but if there are only 2 landscapers the community isnt flooded! good luck.
  7. terrapro

    terrapro LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,234

    i dont know if its different in other states but in michigan if youre an idependent contractor you have to use your own tools and equipment otherwise you will legally be considered an employee. just keep that in mind
  8. jimbobillybob

    jimbobillybob LawnSite Member
    from here
    Messages: 4

    Well I'll see how it goes. I'm in Canada and the laws here are similar. I am considered an employee. I will have to find another job if things don't work out. But I won't let that stop me from working part time doing my own thing until I can go it full time.

    I am trying to but every week my owed taxes are adding up while I'm whittling away the back taxes.
  9. terrapro

    terrapro LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,234

    which means your boss is responsible to make you sign a W-2 and pay taxes and workmanscomp on you. otherwise the two of you dont tell anyone and consider it cash
  10. DAV Mowers

    DAV Mowers LawnSite Member
    Messages: 127

    I don't know your set up but there are a lot of business that pays their workers straight pay and they work out and pay their own taxes.

    Take an auction, their auctioners and ringmen get straight pay without any withholdings taken out. They then do the taxes themselves or have a CPA do it all.

    If your thinking you will get a raise from $15 an hour if your boss goes "legit" you could be wrong. If he does go "legit" then he takes your taxes out of that $15 and you will be bring home much less every week.

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