TN 10 (08-11)

RS 02101.188 Professional People

A. Definition of a professional

A professional works in an occupation that requires education equivalent to college graduation or beyond and may involve compliance with professional and legal standards prior to practicing in the field. Occupations in the professional field include architects, attorneys, certified public accountants, and engineers.

B. Professional people as employees

Professionals are employees when:

  • the employer pays their business expenses; however, professional people often pay their own licensure fees regardless of whether or not they work as employees;

  • the employer supervises and reviews their services;

  • the employer furnishes them with offices and office facilities;

  • they are in a continuing relationship;

  • the employer pays them a fixed salary determined on a weekly, monthly, annual, or similar basis;

  • they cannot hire substitutes or helpers;

  • they incur no expenses or make investments;

  • they may be fired at will and have the right to terminate the relationship at any time without liability;

  • they work under conditions that make their services integral parts of another business; and

  • they work when and where the employer dictates.

C. Professional people as independent contractors

Professionals are independent contractors when they:

  • depend on the amount of time, energy, and ingenuity they apply to their work for their livelihood;

  • hire and direct assistants or helpers;

  • offer their services to the public;

  • pay all business expenses;

  • establish their own business office; and

  • work at hours of their choice.


To Link to this section - Use this URL:
http://policy.ssa.gov/poms.nsf/lnx/0302101188
RS 02101.188 - Professional People - 08/19/2011
Batch run: 08/19/2011
Rev:08/19/2011