A Guide to Independent Contractor Agreements in Texas

July 2, 2024

The label ‘independent contractor’ is increasingly common across various sectors, notably in ridesharing and food delivery services, where contract employment is becoming more prevalent. With the rise of gig economy jobs, it’s essential for businesses contemplating working with independent contractors to understand the elements of a strong independent contractor agreement in Texas. Crafting well-thought-out contracts with the assistance of an experienced Texas contract attorney at Quadros, Migl & Crosby can significantly protect both the business and the independent contractors they employ.

An independent contractor agreement clearly defines the scope of work to be performed, payment details, and other critical terms necessary for managing the relationship, such as clauses concerning liability and termination. Having these details in a written agreement or contract helps minimize the likelihood of misunderstandings or disputes regarding the nature of the relationship. Additionally, this document serves as a formal record that is necessary for legal, compliance, and tax purposes.

What Is an Independent Contractor Agreement? 

An independent contractor agreement is an official document that outlines a working relationship between a company (or individual) and a contractor who is hired to perform specific tasks. Unlike traditional employees, independent contractors operate under their own business, offering services to clients on a non-permanent basis. 

This type of agreement is essential because it clarifies the following important aspects:

  • Scope of Work: The agreement specifies what tasks the contractor is expected to perform, detailing the project’s requirements and expectations to prevent scope creep and ensure clear deliverables.
  • Payment Terms: It lays out how and when the contractor will be compensated. This might include rates per hour, per project, milestones payments, or other arrangements suitable to the nature of the work.
  • Duration of Contract: The document defines the timeline for the project, including beginning and end dates and conditions under which the contract might be extended.
  • Independence of the Contractor: The agreement reaffirms that the contractor is not an employee but a separate entity responsible for managing their own business, including tax obligations, insurance, and other business-related expenses.
  • Confidentiality and Intellectual Property: It often includes clauses protecting sensitive information and specifying ownership rights over any work product created as part of the contract.
  • Termination Conditions: Terms under which either party can end the agreement are clearly stated, providing a clear exit strategy for unsatisfactory outcomes or completion of the project.

By defining these elements, an independent contractor agreement not only protects the parties involved but also supports a transparent and efficient working relationship. This contract ensures that both the hiring entity and the contractor enter into their professional engagement with mutual understanding and agreed expectations.

Disputes Related to Independent Contractor Agreements in Texas 

Disputes arising from independent contractor agreements in Texas can stem from a variety of issues, often due to misunderstandings or miscommunications about the terms of the contract. 

The following are some typical sources of disputes and ways to address them:


One of the most frequent issues is the misclassification of an individual as an independent contractor when they function more like an employee. This can lead to legal challenges, especially concerning employment benefits and tax implications. Properly defining the relationship in the agreement and adhering to it in practice is crucial.

Scope of Work

Disagreements over the scope of work are common when the contract does not clearly define the services to be provided. Detailed descriptions of the work and expectations can prevent this type of dispute.

Payment Issues

Disputes over payment terms, such as timing, amount, and method of payment, can arise if these terms are not explicitly agreed upon in the contract. Ensuring that the contract clearly outlines all payment details can help avoid these conflicts.

Intellectual Property Rights

Conflicts may occur over who holds the rights to products developed by an independent contractor. The agreement should specify how intellectual property is handled to prevent disputes over ownership.

Termination of Agreement

Disagreements may also arise regarding the termination of the contract, particularly if the termination terms are not clearly laid out. The agreement should include specific conditions under which the contract may be terminated by either party.

To effectively manage and resolve these disputes, you must have a well-drafted independent contractor agreement that outlines every aspect of the relationship. Additionally, seeking legal counsel when disputes arise can help maintain a professional and productive relationship between parties.  

Speak With the Business Lawyers of Quadros, Migl & Crosby Today  

If you’re entering into an independent contractor agreement or facing disputes related to one, consulting the lawyers of Quadros, Migl & Crosby is essential. Our legal team helps to ensure your agreement is compliant with Texas laws, clearly drafted to avoid common pitfalls, and strong enough to protect your interests.  

Don’t let contractual issues disrupt your business or professional relationships – contact a Texas attorney today at (713) 300-9662 or fill out a contact form.