An employee works under an employment contract and is generally under the control of the employer, who determines their hours, duties, and work methods. Employees are often restricted or prohibited by their employers from taking on other employment opportunities. Because of the socioeconomic status of employees in most countries, they often enjoy more statutory benefits and legal protections to ensure they are treated fairly and equitably. Common examples of employees include cashiers, clerks and most office workers.
In contrast, an independent contractor works under a contract for services and is not under the control of the client or employer. Independent contractors are generally free to work for multiple clients or employers and set their own hours and work methods. Independent contractors include professionals like doctors, lawyers and accountants.
Unlike employees, independent contractors are not entitled to the same statutory rights as employees, but they may be entitled to certain contractual rights under their contract for services. For example, they may negotiate a fee for their services, set their own work schedule, and have control over how they perform the work.
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