As a writer, phreelance or otherwise, you get used to doing contract work. This type of work takes all forms. It usually pays a flat rate but can also pay hourly or by the word. The one common aspect of contract work is that the company pays you the amount you’ve earned without taking taxes out.

I’m not a fan of contract work. Or rather, I’m not a fan of the level of financial responsibility contract work assumes I have.

Don’t get me wrong, I really enjoy getting paid to ply my craft. I even don’t mind making weekly trips to the bank to deposit my checks, since contract work never allows for direct deposit.

However, contract work removes the responsibility of accounting for taxes from the company and places it on the worker. It seems unfair to burden someone, especially one you’re not paying a whole lot anyway, with the process of making sure the government gets their cut.

The gig I had over the summer has been extended through the year. This is great. What makes this extension even more appealing is that my co-workers and I will now receive direct deposit.

The one issue I had with the summer gig was that there were complications with how and when payment was distributed. It caused issues because I have bills to pay. I can’t do that when I’m told that “there was a mistake made by payroll” and because of that, paychecks will be a week late.

Furthermore, when said paychecks were delivered no taxes were taken out. Now, I have to keep track of the amount of allowances I have and square it up with the IRS at a later date.

Why are you not only paying me late, but also making me do all the work in terms of deducting taxes?

I understand contract work is easier to set up and possibly cheaper for companies, but let’s be real. If there is an increase in contract work because companies can’t afford to hire people outright won’t there will be an increase in people reporting their income incorrectly or not reporting it at all?

It seems like it’s in everyone’s best interest to deduct taxes up front. The comedian, Chris Rock, called having taxes taken out getting “checked-jacked.”  That may be true, but I’d rather have that than the government tell me I didn’t calculate my taxes right and take more of the little money I earned from my contract work.

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