There’s nothing quite like being an independent worker, as the unusual problems the self-employed must face are ones the traditionally employed would never encounter. Freelancers don’t have access to the protection that is usually found in other, larger, businesses. They suffer from their singularity and fight battles unique to that of the self-employed.
Self-Employed: The Battles Fought Solely By the Independent Worker
1: Unemployment - If you are self-employed, there is no such thing as unemployment protection. In 2009, over 80% of freelancers, at times, had zero work and there was no help.
2: Taxes - You know what’s fascinating? The self-employed are finding themselves paying more in taxes than traditional employees. They have higher social security and income taxes and pay those taxes four times a year versus just one.
3: Health Care - Affordable health care is a notorious issue concerning the self-employed. For those that don’t have the luxury of employee insurance, trying to secure good (and affordable) coverage is near impossible. The cost scares freelancers and some even choose to go on without. Less than half of independent workers are actually insured. Considering how important our health is, this is downright scary.
4: Non-payment - Take a look at these fascinating figures:
- Independent workers make up 30 perfect of the US workforce.
- Of that 30%, 77% have trouble getting paid from clients.
Wow. When it comes to getting paid late, freelancers only have two options: sue, or forget about it. In 2009, just in New York state, the self-employed lost $4.7 billion in late payments. Therefore, these freelancers are working to create legislation that will impose harsher penalties on late payers. The Freelancer’s Union says that “almost 80% of independent workers will be stiffed by clients in their careers – and they have no legal protections like traditional employees do.” That’s why they are pushing the Freelancers Payment Protection Act. Check out the numbers, and don’t forget to look at the “World’s Longest Invoice” compiled by the union.
Freelancers face an unusual set of problems and need our help. Here at Funding Gates, we’re aiming to help them get paid faster. If you’d like to find out how you can help, you can support the Freelancers Payment Protection Act.