When searching for your dream career, freelancing is no longer just a temporary state. Since it’s been taken seriously by a lot of people, it has been a long-term career option for many intelligent and skilled Filipinos.
Freelance is a dream career and a fundamental source of livelihood for many individuals who enjoy mobility, freedom from a fixed employer, and their own time.
The committee level in the House of Representatives has been hurdled by a bill that protects freelancers in the country.
This week, the House Labor and Jobs Committee, headed by 1-PACMAN Rep. Enrico Pineda, passed a replacement bill that would promote the rights and welfare of freelancers, guaranteeing them the right to humane working conditions and a decent living wage.
What is a Freelancer?
The bill defines a “freelancer” as any person or agency hired or retained as an independent contractor to do work according to an employer or a company’s own methods. But, it’s without being subject to the hiring party’s control; and is hired in return for compensation to provide services.
It specifies that, unless there is a more advantageous fee said in the contract, the hazard pay to be given to freelancers must be equal to at least 25% of the gross pay for the duration of job deployment.
The principal author of the bill, Deputy Speaker Eddie Villanueva, said it would guarantee the non-negotiable aspects of business transactions between an employer and a freelancer, such as the following:
- Payment schedules;
- Standard fees;
- Existence of a contract; and
- Other benefits that a regular job offers
A Bill That Protects Freelancers… But in What Ways?
Villanueva said that the bill also contains fines and penalties for recruiting parties that do not comply with the policies laid down in the proposed measure.
As per the School of Labor and Industrial Relations (UP-SOLAIR) of the Philippines, we ranked third worldwide in terms of online freelancing, next only to India and the United States.
At present, Filipino freelancers are pegged at 1.5 million. Many experts are looking for this number to rise, especially with the pandemic being at hand.
Among other items, the accepted bill sets out the following legislative terms for freelancers; compulsory execution of a written contract specifying the terms of:
- List of unlawful practices
- Tax part
- Hazard Pay
- Night shift differential
- Penalty for such violations
How Does The Bill Work?
With more and more freelancers in the country, we face an urgent need to protect and empower this new sector with the ease of doing business.
One of a freelancer’s greatest problems is non-payment, which is why this particular bill gives freelancers the power to claim what they are rightfully due from their employer as per their signed contract.
If an employer declines to compensate a freelancer for services rendered, the aggrieved party may file a complaint with the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE). The agency may require investigation; and a fine of up to P250,000 shall be levied on the non-compliant employer if the complaint is found to be legitimate.
This initiative also takes into account the ease of doing business for freelancers. For instance, the bill makes it easier for freelancers to register with the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR); it also allows freelancers for the first three (3) years to be exempted from tax payment; and so on.
We can only expect our pool of freelancers to expand in our era of instantaneous global communication and interconnectivity, millennialism that values mobility, entrepreneurship, innovation, and increased specialization.
Pros of Freelancing
You are your own boss
You can have the freedom to decide how many hours you’re going to work. Including when, where, and how. Therefore, this might be the best perks of working freelance.
You’ll have more opportunities
Freelancing makes it possible for you to take on all kinds of tasks and projects that interest you or challenge you.
So, if you have the skills for it and get paid for it, you can take on certain jobs and other opportunities.
You have a huge potential to earn a lot
Freelancers are not linked to a particular job or employer. This implies that there is always the opportunity to earn bigger and more.
Typically, most freelancers juggle multiple projects at the same time. They’re able to do so because of the flexibility of the setup.
Cons of Freelancing
Cash flow could be inconsistent
There will be occasions when it can be difficult to get clients, and this may be a real challenge, especially if you have a family that relies on your income.
No client, no job
There is no “real” job security, in other words. On the other hand, note that a regular job for employees does not give a 100 percent guarantee, too.
By ensuring they still get new leads and work with several clients, seasoned freelancers get around this con by:
Getting multiple clients
It takes discipline, good time management, and persistence with many clients and projects all at the same time, which can be tough to do at times.
In order to get around this, it is important to have an effective workflow system so that you will not feel swamped.
What do you think about the bill that protects freelancers here in the Philippines? Do you think it’s fair for everyone? Moreover, would this measure be effective in its goals and ideals?
Source/s: Manila Standard