My question involves employment and labor law for the state of: Illinois
I am a contractor who has an ex subcontractor who is claiming to nave not been fully compensated and claims that I miscatagorized them as a sub when they feelthey should have been called an employee. They were passing out flyers from door to door. They worked at their own pace, on their own schedule-I did not tell them how many to pass out, nor when or how, They were given a shirt bearing my companies name but were not required to wear it, in fact they also flyered for another company at the same time and on chilly days wore his sweatshirt while flyering for me. I gave them instructions of what town that were to be flyering in but paid them hourly due to the fact that some houses are further apart than other so they could not be paid on a per flyer basis because of the walk in between them. I did check up on then by driving by where they said they were and looking for the leaflets to be on every door. I paid them fully based upon what they told me that their hours were, and they never reported to me more than 6 hrs of work in a given day, never more than 3 days a week. They worked a very short time and after they had not flyered for over a week I told them that they were fired. They are suing, and their lawyer is looking for $50K, last 2 weeks of wages, overtime, etc. Their lawyer has stated that he will "rack that amount up easily in his legal fees" and that "he only needs to prove that I owe his client $1.00" and he is entitled to his full fees. Is it true that someone could sue, get damages of one dollar and force $50k+ of atty fees upon me or does the atty fee need to be proportionate to the damage? I am concerned that with the low burden of proving a single mispayment of one dollar could end up costing a lot more. Are they miscatagorized? The other atty is as serious as a heart attack, and has added on a few more allegations that I do not want to discuss without atty/client.