Guide to the Law for Freelancers and Gig Workers in New York

Here is a guide to the law for freelance workers (aka contract workers, self-employed, gig workers, independent contractors, consultants, etc) in New York. Some laws related to freelancers are also made at the federal level, so be sure to check out our Guide to Freelancers in the U.S.

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Do employment laws apply to freelancers?

Generally, no. Freelancers are treated as a business, so business laws apply. Thus employment law does not apply, unless a freelancer is “misclassified.”

However, New York City provides that employment discrimination and gender-based harassment apply to freelancers and independent contractors the same as employees.1NYC Admin Code Sec 8-102

Do freelancers have any protections in New York?

New York City passed the Freelance Isn’t Free Act in 2017. This law require companies hiring freelancers to use a written contract and increasing penalties for violating the contract.2Freelance Isn’t Free Act

While the New York State legislature passed a statewide Freelance Isn’t Free Act, it has been vetoed by the governor in December 2022.


See our Guide to Freelancer Resources

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