New York Employment Law Blog

Monday, May 15, 2017

Freelance Isn’t Free Act Goes Into Effect in New York City

Today, the Freelance Isn’t Free Act (“FIFA”) went into effect in New York City.  The law requires parties that engage “freelance workers” to reduce an agreement to writing when the value of the service provided is $800 or more.  Under the law, a “freelance worker” is “any natural person or any organization composed of no more than one natural person, whether or not incorporated or employing a trade name, that is hired or retained as an independent contractor by a hiring party to provide services in exchange for compensation.”  

The $800 valuation is determined by looking at the services for the project at issue, or when aggregating all the contracts for services between the parties in the preceding one hundred twenty (120) days. 

The written agreement must include, at a minimum, the following information:

  • the name and address of both the hiring party and the freelance worker,
  • an itemized list of the services that will be provided and the value of those services,
  • the rate and method of compensation, and
  • the date on which payment is due or the mechanism by which such date will be determined.

When the agreement does not indicate a due date for payment, the hiring party must pay the freelance worker within thirty (30) days of completion of the services. 

FIFA also prohibits a hiring party from threatening, intimidating, disciplining, harassing, denying a work opportunity, or discriminating against a freelance worker who exercises his or her rights under the law.

The law establishes penalties for violations of these rights that are similar to those under the New York Labor Law, including statutory damages, double damages, injunctive relief, and attorney’s fees.

Contact the Law Offices of Yale Pollack, P.C. to learn more about the law and other employment laws that may affect you.

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