8 Tips to Protecting your Rights as a Freelancer

8 Tips to Protecting your Rights as a Freelancer

August 31, 2022 Off By Glespynorson

Being a freelancer can be an exciting and rewarding career path. It’s also a great way to earn extra income or transition into full-time work after leaving a corporate job. But as a freelancer, you have less workplace protection than employees do—and that means you need to understand your rights as well as the responsibilities of your clients.

Know Your Rights

If you’re a freelancer, understanding your rights is important. If you think that you are being treated unfairly, know what to do about it. It’s also critical for freelancers to understand how to negotiate contracts and protect their intellectual property. Finally, many freelancers may have questions about when they should ask for help or consider legal action against an employer or client.

Consider Insurance

There are several types of insurance you should consider as a freelancer, including

● Disability Insurance

Your income shouldn’t depend on your physical condition. If it does, then disability insurance is essential for keeping you and your family financially stable in the event of an illness or injury that prevents you from working.

● Life Insurance

As a freelancer, it’s important to ensure that your loved ones will be able to carry on with their lives after something happens to you—but freelancer insurance plans vary widely in price, coverage and features. Before purchasing any type of life insurance policy, consult with an experienced specialist who can help educate you about the benefits and drawbacks of different policies so that you can make an informed decision about what makes sense for your particular situation (and budget).

Keep Good Records

Keep good records. This is probably the most important thing you can do to protect yourself as a freelancer. Keep records of all transactions and make sure that you have copies of everything, including contracts and agreements with clients, invoices for payment, receipts for materials and expenses, etc.

Vet New Clients

When you begin to work with a new client, it’s important that you have a contract in place and that both parties understand their responsibilities and liabilities.

In addition to having an initial meeting with your client, you should check out the reputation of the firm or person who is hiring you by Googling them and asking for references. If possible, ask for samples of previous work so that you can see their style before beginning any projects together.

Finally, if at any point during the process of working with this new client that doesn’t feel comfortable or if something seems off about them or their business practices (or even just how they act), walk away from the project immediately.

Secure A Legal Contract Before Work Starts

When you’re a freelancer, getting paid can be a challenge. Make sure you secure a legal contract before work starts. A contract will include the terms of your agreement with the client, including any payment schedules and deadlines. It helps ensure that both parties are clear on what is expected of them and when it needs to be completed. Clients also have rights and responsibilities under this agreement; if they fail to live up to their end of the bargain, they may find themselves in breach of contract—and you’d be able to take them to court if need be.

This can also protect both parties by giving them greater peace of mind when entering into an agreement together both sides know exactly where they stand financially without having to worry about getting conned out of money or time commitments later down the line.

Don’t be Afraid to Negotiate

Don’t be afraid to negotiate. It’s a simple concept, but it can be easy to forget as a freelancer. You need to be confident in your worth and know that if you don’t ask for what you want or deserve, nobody else will do it for you. If a client asks if they can pay late or wants more work from you than originally promised, don’t let them push their luck—you shouldn’t either. When negotiating your contract with a client, make sure there are clauses protecting both parties’ rights and that everyone is on board with the terms of the agreement before signing anything off on either end of the deal.

Know Your Tax Obligations

As a freelancer, you are responsible for paying your own income taxes. The IRS requires that citizens pay federal income tax on their earnings, even if they are self-employed or work as a freelancer. If you plan to earn more than $600 in the next year, you will likely need to file a Schedule C with your personal income tax return. You may also have additional state and local tax obligations depending on where you live.

Ensure That Clients Pay On Time

When you’re working with a client, it’s important to have a clear payment schedule. Clients often don’t realize the financial burden that comes with paying freelancers late. If you work as a web designer, for example, and your clients don’t pay on time, you may need to rent office space and hire employees. This can be costly and stressful. It’s best for both parties if the client pays on time so that both parties are happy working together in the long run.


If you’re a freelancer, it’s important to know your rights and how to protect them. As a freelancer, you are your own boss and work from home or anywhere in the world. This means that you may not have any employee benefits such as paid time off, paid holidays or health insurance. If you do decide to hire an employee who works with you on a regular basis then they will be able to receive these benefits through their employment with your company.

Article by Emily Lamp


Emily Lamp is a freelance writer, working closely with many aspiring thinkers and entrepreneurs from various companies. She is also interested in self-improvement, entrepreneurship and technology. Say hi to Emily on Twitter @EmilyLamp2.