Employer Resources

The Best Way to Pay Independent Contractors

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Independent contractors are a popular option for many businesses worldwide. When you hire an independent contractor, you get a specialist when and where you need them, without worrying about having to provide employee benefits. You also don’t have to worry about finding tasks for them when business is slow. You get work done with less hassle. 

But, you still have to pay them, so let’s talk about payment options. The following payment options can save you time and money. Making your payment method easy for your contractors can ensure that they are satisfied with your company and continue working with you.

Pay Independent Contractors by Check

Paying by check is easy and inexpensive. You don’t need an app or a service to send money. But, there are also some clear disadvantages. 

A check can take a long time to clear, especially if it needs to be mailed. After writing a check, the recipient has to deposit it to the bank for processing. The funds can take up to 5 business days to clear, so it’s not always convenient for the contractor. 

A bounced check can also be another concern for businesses and contractors. Bounced checks are checks that have insufficient funds in the account for it to clear. When a check bounces, the bank usually charges a fee, and it takes longer for the recipient to receive the funds.

Pay Independent Contractors Via ACH Transfers

Another way to pay your independent contractor is through an ACH transfer, which is an electronic bank-to-bank transfer. One great benefit of ACH transfers is the time savings they offer businesses. 

The contractors get paid by sharing their bank account information with the company that is paying them, so the money can be automatically transferred directly into their accounts.

These types of transfers also help ensure that the contractor gets paid on time with no hassle!

Pay Independent Contractors Via Wire Transfers

When you’re looking at other fast and smooth ways to send money, wire transfers are a good choice. They offer flexibility for both parties involved in the transaction.

Usually, it takes only one business day for domestic transfers to process, but international transfers generally take a little longer, sometimes up to 5 days.

The average fee for a domestic transfer is about $15-$20 for recipients and $20-$30 for senders. International transfers are a little more expensive, but are still affordable. If you pay your independent contractors through wire transfer, be sure to include all necessary information to help ensure a quick delivery of the funds.  Read about how to pay international employees.

Pay Contractors by Credit Card

Credit cards are an easy way to pay contractors. Paying by credit card is becoming more popular because it’s less risky for all parties, and it keeps your bank account information private. 

When you use this method, you can get security, convenience, interest-free financing offers, smart rewards programs, and more. Along with that contractors can receive their payments almost immediately.

Keep in mind that a contractor is better off having a merchant bank account when receiving payments by credit card. It’s not mandatory to have one, but it’s helpful. Also, banks generally charge around 3% for this service, and sometimes there is an added monthly fee.

Pay Independent Contractors Online

Online payment systems, such as PayPal, MoneyGram, TransferWise, Skrill, and Payoneer, provide quality services for paying contractors. Among them, PayPal is the most popular option. This app is available in more than 200 countries and has a global active user count of over 300 million.

Each payment system has different features and policies. If you plan to use an online payment system to pay your contractor, research each option thoroughly before deciding which one to use. This will help you find the best system for you and your contractors’ needs.


Guru makes it easy for employers to pay freelancers via many payment methods, including Bank Account, Check, PayPal, Credit Card, and Wire Transfer. Additionally, Guru offers a SafePay service to protect both employers and freelancers during the payment process. Once you find a cost-effective method that works well for all parties involved, then you’re all set! With a regular payment system in place, paying your independent contractor will be hassle-free! You can also find Power Automate consultants on Guru to assist you with workflow management.

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