Should I quit?

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whyohwhy080

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Should I quit?

Postby whyohwhy080 » Wed Feb 15, 2017 8:51 pm

I'm a 3L and I take my bar in July of 2017. Currently, I am working at a law firm who initially started paying me as an independent contractor and was paying me below minimum wage. After a few weeks, I told them I needed to be paid at least $12 per hour and needed to be on W2, and they agreed. They told me that is need to wait two pay periods before they would be able to have me as a W2 (I'm assuming to set up payroll?).

Anyway, this week was the pay period and he was attempting to pay me in cash again. He said "You'll get W2 next week." He gave me a W9 form to fill out which is basically a form given to independent contractors. I rejected the cash and said I'd like to receive it in my W2 check.

I feel like maybe he's just dragging me along. However, there's only two attorneys at this law firm so I don't know if he just forgot. Either way, I do not want to be an independent contractor. I am not sure if he'll be able to provide me with W2 within the next two weeks because it's hard to trust him. At this point, he has not even asked me to fill out a W4 yet which is highly suspicious.

The experience is wonderful though. I've already done a lot within the span of four months. After April, I have to start studying for final exams and the bar exam so there's no way I can just look for another job. It's too late.

I am so confused and don't know what to do at this point. Obviously, it's nice to have some money coming in. How important is two more months of experience when I already have quite a bit on my resume anyway.
Last edited by whyohwhy080 on Wed Feb 15, 2017 8:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.

SFSpartan

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Re: Should I quit?

Postby SFSpartan » Wed Feb 15, 2017 8:57 pm

Solos and small firms can be strange birds. It's likely that setting up payroll simply isn't a high priority for this attorney. That said, you shouldn't accept being an IC, especially not for $12 an hour.

I'm not persuaded that you can't look for a new job - unless this firm has committed to hiring you as an associate post Bar, you can always be a free agent.

dixiecupdrinking

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Re: Should I quit?

Postby dixiecupdrinking » Wed Feb 15, 2017 8:58 pm

If the experience is good, stay. It sounds a little shady, to be honest, and he's ripping you off, but the point is to get what you can out of the job, and the experience is probably worth more than the 12 bucks an hour anyway.

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rpupkin

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Re: Should I quit?

Postby rpupkin » Wed Feb 15, 2017 9:09 pm

dixiecupdrinking wrote:If the experience is good, stay. It sounds a little shady, to be honest, and he's ripping you off, but the point is to get what you can out of the job, and the experience is probably worth more than the 12 bucks an hour anyway.

Agreed. If OP doesn't have a job lined up after last graduation, the experience he's getting is likely more valuable than what he's learning in 3L classes--and he's paying for those.

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Re: Should I quit?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Feb 15, 2017 9:11 pm

rpupkin wrote:
dixiecupdrinking wrote:If the experience is good, stay. It sounds a little shady, to be honest, and he's ripping you off, but the point is to get what you can out of the job, and the experience is probably worth more than the 12 bucks an hour anyway.

Agreed. If OP doesn't have a job lined up after last graduation, the experience he's getting is likely more valuable than what he's learning in 3L classes--and he's paying for those.


To be an independent contractor is just a hassle though. And yes, they are very shady. They had me write an MSJ before I was even formally hired as a pre-requisite. They also filed the MSJ before I received a call that I was hired. This is just an example.

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jchiles

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Re: Should I quit?

Postby jchiles » Wed Feb 15, 2017 9:47 pm

It may be good experience but I wouldn't want to stay in that environment. Make sure you don't neglect actually finding a post grad job, even if that means working less or looking for jobs during class or at work.

run26.2

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Re: Should I quit?

Postby run26.2 » Wed Feb 15, 2017 9:52 pm

If he's forgetful, maybe make it easy on him. You could download the W4 form yourself and fill it out, hand it to him, and see what he says.

dixiecupdrinking

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Re: Should I quit?

Postby dixiecupdrinking » Wed Feb 15, 2017 10:25 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
rpupkin wrote:
dixiecupdrinking wrote:If the experience is good, stay. It sounds a little shady, to be honest, and he's ripping you off, but the point is to get what you can out of the job, and the experience is probably worth more than the 12 bucks an hour anyway.

Agreed. If OP doesn't have a job lined up after last graduation, the experience he's getting is likely more valuable than what he's learning in 3L classes--and he's paying for those.


To be an independent contractor is just a hassle though. And yes, they are very shady. They had me write an MSJ before I was even formally hired as a pre-requisite. They also filed the MSJ before I received a call that I was hired. This is just an example.

No doubt he's taking advantage of you. But you can still get enough out of it to be worth sticking it out.

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Re: Should I quit?

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Feb 16, 2017 2:38 am

Anonymous User wrote:
rpupkin wrote:
dixiecupdrinking wrote:If the experience is good, stay. It sounds a little shady, to be honest, and he's ripping you off, but the point is to get what you can out of the job, and the experience is probably worth more than the 12 bucks an hour anyway.

Agreed. If OP doesn't have a job lined up after last graduation, the experience he's getting is likely more valuable than what he's learning in 3L classes--and he's paying for those.


To be an independent contractor is just a hassle though. And yes, they are very shady. They had me write an MSJ before I was even formally hired as a pre-requisite. They also filed the MSJ before I received a call that I was hired. This is just an example.

That's super illegal

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rpupkin

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Re: Should I quit?

Postby rpupkin » Thu Feb 16, 2017 4:16 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:To be an independent contractor is just a hassle though. And yes, they are very shady. They had me write an MSJ before I was even formally hired as a pre-requisite. They also filed the MSJ before I received a call that I was hired. This is just an example.

That's super illegal

Brave anon. Guys, this wasn't just illegal, it was super illegal.

whyohwhy080

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Re: Should I quit?

Postby whyohwhy080 » Thu Feb 16, 2017 4:46 am

I'm HIGHLY considering giving my resignation tomorrow in person. I'm not sure I can continue to work in this environment. Although they told
me there was the possibility of me being hired as an "associate," I'm not sure it's worth staying here even if I don't have anything lined up.

I know they're going to try to manipulate me into staying though.

personofinterest

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Re: Should I quit?

Postby personofinterest » Thu Feb 16, 2017 4:52 am

whyohwhy080 wrote:I'm HIGHLY considering giving my resignation tomorrow in person. I'm not sure I can continue to work in this environment. Although they told
me there was the possibility of me being hired as an "associate," I'm not sure it's worth staying here even if I don't have anything lined up.

I know they're going to try to manipulate me into staying though.


From what you've said, the vague suggestion of employment is worthless. As other posters have pointed out, you may want to keep working if the experience is helpful. If the experienced gained plus the money you make is worth the time/effort/opportunity cost, then keep working there. Don't let the associate offer talk affect your decision. Even if they are being unethical and treating you unfairly, it may still be worth it for you.

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Re: Should I quit?

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Feb 16, 2017 5:01 am

personofinterest wrote:
whyohwhy080 wrote:I'm HIGHLY considering giving my resignation tomorrow in person. I'm not sure I can continue to work in this environment. Although they told
me there was the possibility of me being hired as an "associate," I'm not sure it's worth staying here even if I don't have anything lined up.

I know they're going to try to manipulate me into staying though.


From what you've said, the vague suggestion of employment is worthless. As other posters have pointed out, you may want to keep working if the experience is helpful. If the experienced gained plus the money you make is worth the time/effort/opportunity cost, then keep working there. Don't let the associate offer talk affect your decision. Even if they are being unethical and treating you unfairly, it may still be worth it for you.


I can only continue working for another 8 weeks before I have to leave in order to focus on studying for finals and then the bar exam. I guess I could gain experience within those few weeks but I'm not sure how valuable that would be.

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Re: Should I quit?

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Feb 16, 2017 2:58 pm

What is the concern with working as an IC? You can deduct mileage, meals, and all sorts of other things (i.e. a home office) to offset the $12/hr you are making. Although I suppose the standard deduction would accomplish much of the same.

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Re: Should I quit?

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Feb 16, 2017 3:28 pm

Anonymous User wrote:What is the concern with working as an IC? You can deduct mileage, meals, and all sorts of other things (i.e. a home office) to offset the $12/hr you are making. Although I suppose the standard deduction would accomplish much of the same.


This is sorta my thought as well. I work during the school year at a small firm as an independent contractor. I've worked here throughout 2L and now 3L years (with a break during summer for SA). It has worked out really well for me come tax time. Also, since I'm an IC (granted, my boss respects the designation), I can take as many days off as I want, etc.



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