ANSWER: An independent contractor generally includes any person or entity retained for a limited duration (generally not to exceed one year) to provide professional or specialized services that may not be readily available otherwise. Such persons are often paid either on an hourly or project basis as opposed to weekly or monthly. Also, their work is not subject to the control of the person or entity that hires them. Because they are not employees, independent contractors are not entitled to benefits provided to employees under federal and state employment laws. You should not try to determine for yourself whether an individual is an employee or contractor.
If your PTA’s babysitter is an independent contractor and you pay over $600.00 in a calendar year, you would be required to provide a 1099-MISC. If you pay less than $600.00 in a calendar year, you are not required to provide a 1099-MISC.
The other consideration for your PTA is insurance. If your PTA is insured through AIM, babysitting is covered under your General Liability insurance policy provided you follow the outlined precautions below to limit the risk of a claim:
Babysitting is only something you would provide during your organization meetings or other sponsored events. You must have two adult volunteers (18 years or older) in the room at all times. This dual rule protects against any molestation claims, provides a second witness to rule out false claims, and provides extra assistance in the case of an emergency. If paid baby sitters are involved, they will not be covered under this policy. This information comes from AIM, so if you have any further questions regarding this, call AIM for further details.
If your local unit doesn't have AIM insurance, then you will need to contact your insurance company to make sure that babysitting is covered.