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Does this sound right?

I’m being presented with an opportunity to drive a truck that somebody else owns but they are not a truck driver. They will pay me every week , and send me 1099 at the end of the year. They pay for all maintenance, gas , expenses. I will be paid loaded miles only. They have a carrier who will dispatch loads. Does this sound right? Also I’m a rookie driver fresh out of school, what do I do or ask to make sure I get credit to drive for them for 6 months , so if I decide to drive for another company I get credit for that. Thanks

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Short answer… that’s a warning sign of working for an outfit that probably doesn’t pay well and doesn’t follow the rules/laws.

This is a common practice in trucking. However, it’s usually done by small operations and shady companies. One of the reasons they like to pay 1099 is because they have less liability because you’re not an employee. Because you’re not an employee, you don’t have the protections an employee would normally have working for an employer (such as unemployment benefit and workers compensation insurance coverage). Also, many people look at the pay on a 1099 and see a bigger sum of money and think they’re getting paid more. They’re not being paid more; the taxes haven’t been deducted for you that’s why the payment is more. When you’re paid on a 1099, it’s the same as you being a sole-proprietor business and everything is your responsibility to provide for yourself. Owner-operators get 1099’s at the end of the year too. So do independent sales people. In my opinion, in trucking if you don’t own the truck there’s no need for you to be a 1099 driver.

In a “normal” job you’re paid on a IRS Form W-2. Which is the form used for reporting employee pay to the IRS. When you’re paid as an employee the employer is required to withhold taxes on your behalf and send that money to the IRS (and your state) for you (this is your income tax). When you’re an independent contractor your pay is reported to the IRS on a different form. It’s reported on IRS Form 1099-MISC and no tax was withheld (no income tax was paid, but how much you were paid was reported). So then you’re responsible to pay the tax money to the IRS (and to your state income tax). Either way, you’re still paying the same tax. It’s just that one way the employer is doing it for you and the other way you have to do it. You’re actually supposed to do it quarterly. But it’s usually only a small penalty if you only do it once a year (and pay it all by April 15).

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