Definition of a Consultant (IRS Guidelines)

Who is an independent contractor? 

An independent contractor is someone who maintains an independent business and is available for hire to provide service to the public. Generally, a person cannot become an independent contractor just because he or she wants to be or because an employer prefers them to be. It is not enough that the employee and the employer agree. If a person only works for one business and is directed and controlled by that business, the person probably is an employee and not an independent contractor.

Rhode Island Department of Labor and Training

Designation of Status as an Independent Contractor:
Click here to fill out the form securely
Click here to download the form in PDF format - revised 2/06

Notice of withdrawal of designation of independent contractor:
Click here to fill out the form securely online or
Click here to download the for in pdf or excel format - revised 2/06

​Effective immediately, all outside vendors and/or individuals (considered as "independent contractors") who perform work at any of the Lifespan affiliates are required to file the attached form, "Notice of Designation as Independent Contractor," with the RI Department of Labor and Training Workers' Compensation Unit under the RI Workers Compensation Law. This law began 1/1/03 and applies to anyone who lives in RI and elsewhere.

Independent contractors include consultants, vendors, or anyone being paid to perform work. This does not apply to Consortium/Contractual Agreements/Subcontracts in which we are the prime contractor.

Investigators must request independent contractors to complete this form and send it to the RI Department of Labor and Training Workers' Compensation Unit. The State will mail a certificate to the independent contractor. The turn-around time is about 3-4 days at the State. The independent contractor must send a copy of the certificate to the investigator with their invoice. Then the investigator needs to attach this copy to the Request for Check (RFC) or Purchase Order (PO).

Investigators need to provide the following information for the "Notice of Designation as Independent Contractor" form:

Lifespan Corporation
167 Point Street, Providence RI 02903
FEIN 22-2861978

No SS# or Bus. License # is needed. (However a Social Security Number is needed for the Request for Check and should appear on the Contractor's Invoice).

When investigators send the "Notice of Designation as Independent Contractor" form (no termination date) to the independent contractor, they need to also send the "Notice of Withdrawal of Designation" form for the independent contractors' convenience.

For those independent contractors who have workers' compensation insurance (any person or company with one or more employees is required to have workers' compensation insurance), they do not have to file the form. They must provide proof of workers' compensation insurance coverage. This needs to be attached to the RFC or PO.

Investigators need to keep a copy of the certificate and proof of insurance coverage and submit them with all requests for future payments. Only one certificate proof of insurance coverage is required per independent contractor and it's good for all Lifespan affiliate projects.

Due to this state requirement, the Office of Research Administration is not allowed to process requests for payments without this documentation. If you have any questions, please contact Jennifer Conrad in the workers' compensation office by e-mail or the research administrator assigned to your department.