According to the IRS, "The general rule is that an individual is an independent contractor if you, the payer, have the right to control or direct only the result of the work and not the means and methods of accomplishing the result."
The concept of the independent contractor sometimes called "subcontractor" or "freelance" massage therapist falls essentially along the same lines as owning a private practice. However, keep in mind that it is rather difficult to provide a clear definition that is sufficiently specific and at the same time comprehensive enough to be applied to all situations. In saying that, here is a picture of what an independent contractor can be:
An independent contractor can be defined as a person engaged in an independently established business. In other words, a "person engaged in an occupation that contracts to work according to his or her own methods, without being subject to control of the employer except for results." The basic idea of an independent contractor relationship with that of the individual or company is that the massage therapist/skin care specialist has an independent occupation and is only responsible for the finished product or service. According to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), "the general rule is that an individual is an independent contractor if? [the company employing services has] the right to control or direct only the result of the work and not the means and methods of accomplishing the result."
Some legal aspects to consider:
If you are working as an independent contractor and feel the employer you are working with is not working within the legal bounds of the position, contact the IRS and request Form SS-8, Determination of Employee Work Status for Purposes of Federal Employment Taxes and Income Tax Withholding or seek legal council.
Probably one of the most effective tools to protect yourself as an independent contractor is that of the written contract, which will outline exactly what services will be procured, the rate at which your services will be rendered and any other terms of the job. A "simple letter of agreement" may accomplish these points.