If you are an employee paid in cash, you are still eligible for workers compensation benefits. Some employers pay workers in cash, and may classify them as independent contractors. This may be to avoid paying workers compensation insurance premiums and payroll taxes. Being paid in cash by itself does not make you an independent contractor ineligible for Kentucky workers compensation benefits. You may still be an employee if other facts can prove that point.
Kentucky law requires several facts to be examined to determine if you are an employee eligible for workers compensatio benefits or an independent contractor. In Kentucky, these are the important facts that need to be reviewed:
(1) the extent of control which, by the agreement, the master may exercise over the
details of the work;
(2) whether or not the one employed is engaged in a distinct occupation or business;
(3) The kind of occupation, with reference to whether, in the locality, the work is usually done under the direction of the employer or by a specialist without supervision;
(4) the skill required in the particular occupation;
(5) whether the employer or the workman supplies the instrumentalities, tools, and the place of work for the person doing the work;
(6) the length of time for which the person is employed;
(7) the method of payment, whether by the time or by the job;
(8) whether or not the work is a part of the regular business of the employer; and
(9) whether or not the parties believe they are creating the relationship of master and servant. Ratliff v. Redmon, 396 S.W.2d 320 (Ky. 1965).
These are not the only things to be examined, but they are probably the most important. As you can tell from reading the list from the Court’s opinion, being paid in cash is just one of several factors that determine if you are an employee or independent contractor in Kentucky. So, even if you are paid in cash and issued a 1099 at the end of the year, you may still be considered an employee if you fit under the other facts discussed above. An administrative law judge will review all these facts to determine if you are an independent contractor or an employee entitled to benefits.