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Subcontracting snowblowers

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by cwags73, Oct 13, 2007.

  1. cwags73

    cwags73 Junior Member
    Messages: 19

    Any of you subcontract guys for snowblowing/clearing sidewalks? I hate to pay liability on a 1/2 dozen guys I'll use for only a few times a year. Any other suggestions? Anyone in the Lancaster Pa area that is interested send an e-mail to cwags73@comcast.net. Liabilty insurance is a must!
  2. cjasonbr

    cjasonbr Senior Member
    from Mass
    Messages: 635

    You don't pay liability insurance by the person.

    and just because they're the ones shoveling the snow doesn't make the workers automatically liable.

    As long as you're the one that sigend the contract, then you're responsible for the work getting done correctly.

    Edit: If you subbed out the walks you'd probably be 'jointly & severally liable" depending on the wording in your contract. Meaning you'd be the first person sued - but then your recourse would be to sue the sub-contractor.
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2007
  3. cwags73

    cwags73 Junior Member
    Messages: 19

    I know I'm still liablefor the subcontractors work. The more people I have working for me the higher my insurance premiums are. So I'm indirectly paying more for them. I also would have to then pay comp, unemployment, and taxes on them. Maybe I should run my plowing under a different business than my landscaping with it's own insurance. I currently have liability for me and another worker which will be nowhere near enough manpower to do snow removal two complexes I take care of.
  4. cjasonbr

    cjasonbr Senior Member
    from Mass
    Messages: 635

    My liability insurance covers me only. Nobody would ever sue anybody but me because i am the one that signed the contract agreeing to do the work. The people i may hire to do the work are effectively acting as my agent.

    The way i pay for my liability insurance is by the number and type of jobs, not by the number of people it takes to finish it.

    i.e. A property has the same potential liability if you have 1 person clearing it or a million. It's the type of property and the potential traffic that determine potential liability.

    HOWEVER, my regular comprehensive car insurance is entirely dependent on how many people (and their drivings 'steps'/surcharges) are operating the trucks or other equipment that my be covered.

    EDIT: correction: my commercial comprehensive insurance is NOT dependant on surcharges. In MA surcharges aren't counted toward commercial policy's. But i will say they have done a surcharge reports of the people i want to add, and have to have a manager OK it before they'll add them.
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2007
  5. cwags73

    cwags73 Junior Member
    Messages: 19

    Thanks for the info. I need to double check the insurance stuff. I just wandered if anyone does this and if it is successful.
  6. cwags73

    cwags73 Junior Member
    Messages: 19

    Anybody else sub their snowblowing and sidewalks out? How does it work for you?
  7. SnoFarmer

    SnoFarmer PlowSite Fanatic
    from N,E. MN
    Messages: 9,883

    Sounds like you are trying to do work under the table?

    You do not want to pay for employees?

    A sub- contractor is a contractor.
    So you want to hire a business that will do your snow blowing.

    It needs to be a business, not paying a guy cash to do it for you.

    This link to the IRS site telling you what the difference is should be a sticky as most do not seam to know what a

    1., contractor is
    2. sub-contractor is
    3. Employee is

    This just baffles me?

    Most of the guys that think that they are hiring SUBS or SUBING are just employees that are working under the table....

    A sub contractor is a "contractor" a separate business that you hire to do a job.

    If your a sub or you sub you need to read this link below.

    Read this site The IRS will tell you the difference READ it all
    IT could save your butt WHEN you get audited by the IRS..
  8. QuadPlower

    QuadPlower PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,056

    I don't know if he was TRYING to work under the table or not, but you are right about subs. If you are not 1099 them at the end of the year they are your employees. And if you are not W-2 the people that plow for you then you're wrong there also.
  9. cwags73

    cwags73 Junior Member
    Messages: 19

    Thanks, but I understand the difference between an employee and a contractor. Does it not make more sense to sub this out than to hire more employees for the hit or miss chances with snow removal in southern PA. I just wandered if anyone has done it this way and if it worked. You can 1099 them all you want but the law states something like they must have complete control of how they perform the job they are contracted for. What do you guys think would be a fair rate to pay an outfit that would do this? thanks again
  10. SnoFarmer

    SnoFarmer PlowSite Fanatic
    from N,E. MN
    Messages: 9,883

    As long as you know the difference and are truly hiring a
    Then sure it makes sense.
    But remember they are your competition also.

    You are paid so much for the walks.
    You make enough that you can hire someone else to do it?
    What does this look like to the people who hired you?
    Just a thought

    I'm hiring my competitions sidewalk crew to do some work for me this year also.
    So It's no more shoveling or snow-blowing for me.
    Well see how this works.

    What is a fair rate?
    What would you charge to do the work?
    Then ask for them to submit bids.