Filling out forms before job
Thread poster: Max Hessler

Max Hessler  Identity Verified
Local time: 23:30
English to German
Nov 21, 2005

An US translation agency just contacted me with a potential translation job. Before even sending the job they sent me 4 forms to complete and fax to them: 1. Tax form 2. Independent Contractor Work Compensation form 3. Agreement not to compete 4. Confidentiality Agreement.
I never had such a case before, but probably that's quite common for US agencies. I've been doing jobs without all these forms until now, without any bad experiences.
Any helpful comments etc.?

Max


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Piotr Domanski  Identity Verified
Local time: 23:30
Member (2005)
English to Polish
Depends on the agreement content Nov 21, 2005

I have been asked to complete and sign similar documents several times, even when I was not contracted any specific job - just to be included in teh agency's database. The documents came from different agencies, not only US, but predominantly the major ones.

I do not think there is any reason to worry generally. However you should carefully consider the Agreement conditions. They can be very different from agency to agency, so it is diffucult to tell if it is Ok to sign them generally. Just make sure the condition the agency offers are OK with you. If they are not - you can either negotiate or give up.

Regards,

Piotr


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Peter Bouillon  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 23:30
French to German
+ ...
#3 and #4 are not uncommon Nov 21, 2005

MaxTrans wrote:
Before even sending the job they sent me 4 forms to complete and fax to them: 1. Tax form 2. Independent Contractor Work Compensation form 3. Agreement not to compete 4. Confidentiality Agreement.


In my experience, it is not uncommon to be sent a confidentiality agreement and an agreement not to compete "on the off-chance" that there may be a job. You'd better read them carefully, though: there might be hidden clauses that prevent you from working with any of their customers for the next 10 years, whether you know about them or not (or some such). I personally don't sign anything beyond a two year agreement. You might also want to limit an agreement not to compete to the time you actually start working for them. If they don't offer you actual jobs, there is no point in guaranteeing them not to contact their customers.

I don't sell to the American market, so I don't know just what they want you to sign concerning #1 and #2. As far as I know, however, you don't own or pay tax to the American Income Office on work you sell to America, it is they who own and pay tax to their Income Office. So I don't see the point of a tax form.

P.

[Edited at 2005-11-21 08:55]


Direct link Reply with quote
 
Ford Prefect  Identity Verified
Burkina Faso
Local time: 21:30
German to English
+ ...
US tax forms Nov 21, 2005

The tax form is apparently to protect the agency, who are usually (allegedly) supposed to deduct US income tax at source - the form is to prove that their overseas contractor is not liable for US income tax. This isn't an issue for most countries, but don't forget the US, rather unusually, taxes its citizens wherever they live.

Direct link Reply with quote
 
Benno Groeneveld  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 17:30
English to Dutch
+ ...
The Independent Contractor Nov 21, 2005

form is to protect the US company from having to pay social security and other taxes. It makes it clear that a translator is a freelancer, not someone who could be counted as an employee. Employees are much more expensive than freelancers.

Yet another example that the US is in many ways not as modern as it looks. There are lots and lots of forms here. Bureaucracy, impressive letterhead, stamps, signatures and forms in triplicate still rule the USA.


Direct link Reply with quote
 
xxxMarc P  Identity Verified
Local time: 23:30
German to English
+ ...
Filling out forms before job Nov 21, 2005

Benno Groeneveld wrote:

Yet another example that the US is in many ways not as modern as it looks.


?!


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Can Altinbay  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:30
Japanese to English
+ ...
Hmmm... I'm looking at an agreement for 3 years Nov 21, 2005

Peter Bouillon wrote:

there might be hidden clauses that prevent you from working with any of their customers for the next 10 years, whether you know about them or not (or some such). I personally don't sign anything beyond a two year agreement.


Nothing is hidden in the two-page agreement I am considering right now, only their non-compete lasts three years. I confirmed with them, and the wording suggests, that this does not preclude me from working with another agency, which may give me work from a common customer. But when I first read this, I thought three years was rather long. I guess you agree...


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Pamela Brizzola  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 23:30
Member (2004)
English to Italian
+ ...
Standard procedure Nov 21, 2005

Hi All
I'm asked to sign a Non Discloure Agreement 8 times out of 10, and from US agencies I also receive a form stating that you are an independent contract.
I've been accustomed to it and I see no problem.

Actually, the strange thing is that you may sign and agree to their terms, but then they never call you for projects.
What they want is to have all the papers in order (after you pass the test or you are entered in their database), so that all the burocratic part has been done in case there is a job for you to be done quickly.

Pamela


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Richard Creech  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 17:30
French to English
+ ...
Two Years is Generally the Max for a NCA Nov 22, 2005

Can Altinbay wrote:

Nothing is hidden in the two-page agreement I am considering right now, only their non-compete lasts three years. I confirmed with them, and the wording suggests, that this does not preclude me from working with another agency, which may give me work from a common customer. But when I first read this, I thought three years was rather long. I guess you agree...


As an attorney who has worked with non-compete agreements, I can tell you that courts in the United States will not enforce a non-compete agreement if they amount to an unreasonable restraint on one's ability to pursue a livelihood, and two years is generally considered the upper limit.


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Max Hessler  Identity Verified
Local time: 23:30
English to German
TOPIC STARTER
Thanx, Nov 23, 2005

all, for your comments,

Max


Direct link Reply with quote
 


To report site rules violations or get help, contact a site moderator:


You can also contact site staff by submitting a support request »

Filling out forms before job

Advanced search







Across v6.3
Translation Toolkit and Sales Potential under One Roof

Apart from features that enable you to translate more efficiently, the new Across Translator Edition v6.3 comprises your crossMarket membership. The new online network for Across users assists you in exploring new sales potential and generating revenue.

More info »
Anycount & Translation Office 3000
Translation Office 3000

Translation Office 3000 is an advanced accounting tool for freelance translators and small agencies. TO3000 easily and seamlessly integrates with the business life of professional freelance translators.

More info »



Forums
  • All of ProZ.com
  • Term search
  • Jobs
  • Forums
  • Multiple search