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Independent trade contracting guide checklist

The following information is a guide outlining steps that can be taken to help ensure a worker is a subcontractor and not an employee.
  • Ensure the trade contractor is a Pty Ltd company, or partnership and/or registered business 
  • Ensure the trade contractor possesses an Australian Business Number (ABN) and, if necessary, GST registration 
  • Ensure the trade contractor enters into written results-based contract and invoices the principal in accordance with the contract 
  • Ensure the trade contractor has autonomy on job and is able to set their start and finish times (within contract guidelines) 
  • Ensure the trade contractor provides his/her own tools and equipment (they should not be relying upon someone else to provide necessary equipment) 
  • Provide the authority for the trade contractor to employ/engage suitable competent personnel, especially if they are unable to undertake the contract themselves 
  • Ensure the trade contractor is on contract rates – that is works for a fixed fee to achieve a fixed result (hourly rates or instances of payments not being linked to fixed results should be avoided) 
  • Ensure that the trade contractor provides their own workers compensation (where applicable), public liability and sickness and accident insurances 
  • Ensure that the contractor maintains a high level of discretion and flexibility as to how the contracted work is performed 
  • Ensure the trade contractor bears the risk for defective works 
  • Encourage the trade contractor to advertise to the general public at large 
  • Suggest that the trade contractor join an industry association to demonstrate their professional standing as a business to the community at large. 

Note, the above is a guide only and HIA recommends that members investigate their liability under all Acts for those contractors who are deemed employees or workers. 

To find out more, contact HIA's Contracts and Compliance team

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