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    #11 (permalink)  
Old 07-21-2012
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Company name: Clerical Advantage
 
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Default Re: What are your thoughts on being trained by your clients?
The whole issue with offshore workers is complicated. No, the IRS rules probably wouldn't apply (I say probably because I'm not an employment law attorney, meaning I could be wrong.)
That said, the whole outsourcing thing is starting to get much more complicated than it was when Tim Ferriss first released 'The 4 Hour Work Week'. There are multiple instances of legislation and restrictions both at the federal and state levels that are aimed at discouraging offshore outsourcing in order to bring jobs back to the U.S.
There is a good article that shows just how complicated it can be here.
But my issue is more about the message this guy is sending to potential clients. He doesn't state that he's talking about offshore assistants/employees. He calls them virtual assistants. So every PC looking for more info about working with a Virtual Assistant on YouTube is going to stumble across his too slick video and then come to me (or you) and be expecting to train us.
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    #12 (permalink)  
Old 07-21-2012
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Default Re: What are your thoughts on being trained by your clients?
Sara,
There is another article about the ODesk screenshot feature. The writer talks about the possibility of compromising another client's sensitive info accidentally should set off red flags for ALL virtual assistants.
If breaking the IRS independent Contractor rules aren't enough to make you rethink ODesk, this definitely should!
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    #13 (permalink)  
Old 07-21-2012
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Default Re: What are your thoughts on being trained by your clients?
Hi Wordpro Wizard,

I'm no expert on the topic by any means, but I am *fairly sure* the IRS is concerned with any business based in the US. It does not matter where the contractor/employee lives, The US Gov still regulates the US based business and all US rules apply.
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    #14 (permalink)  
Old 07-21-2012
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Default Re: What are your thoughts on being trained by your clients?
Also guys, I think he is talking about training on company-specific tasks...not skills in general. I don't like it either because quite frankly, anyone doing this (helping people find a VA in this way) is using offshore people 99% of the time.

I personally have looked for assistants and those that are both US based AND skilled enough to do what I need are too expensive for me to also make money AND pay them or to just pay them flat out (with me making nothing).

While I understand people wanting to buy cheap (although you get what you pay for), if all the jobs go offshore...who will have the funds to buy the goods and services in the US?

The main part that upsets me about this is....why does he think business owners need help finding a VA? The onus is really on us though....we have to be good at educating business owners ourselves and the need for these "locator" companies will greatly diminish; they will have no place in the industry.
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Old 07-21-2012
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Company name: On My Wings International, LLC
 
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Default Re: What are your thoughts on being trained by your clients?
I decided to go take a look at how Elance handles the IC situation. Take a look at this link.

They have found a gray area, obviously - but I find it extremely interesting that they keep saying they will "mitigate" the possibility of misclassification.

In my research I also discovered this, and this was news to me. There are a lot of times I see people talking about their former employer becoming their client. According to the IRS rules that is a big red flag and no-no. Just sayin' - that's what it says. It can seriously get the employer in trouble because the IRS sees it as a way that the employer may be trying to skirt paying certain taxes.
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Old 10-16-2012
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Default Re: What are your thoughts on being trained by your clients?
Wow, after watching the 'training' video, I checked out his video on timekeeping . . . be sure to 'set their schedule' and determine if they need to 'clock out' for 'a 15-minute lunch or to use the bathroom'. What will you do about 'sick days'? He's clearly not offering what I consider to be VA services.
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