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The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill often requests services from individuals who are not employed by the University but are necessary for the success of University projects and programs. Campus Units may utilize in-house and campus unit support centers for help, but when specialist help is needed, campus units can submit an Independent Contractor agreement accompanied by a proper letter of justification on department letterhead to create a working relationship with an individual and enable payment. These agreements must be made prior to the individual’s performance of service.

Independent Contractors differ from approved University Suppliers in the fact that their work is short-term (less than one year), written for a specific intent and includes a total pay amount pre-determined by the campus unit. Independent Contractors are not required to go through a bidding process but are required to do a background check (unless the contract is for a one-day speaker). See HR policy.

Types of Contracts

There are two basic independent contracts for campus work:


Campus Units should thoroughly read Policy 708 and follow Procedure 708.1 or 708.3, depending on the appropriate circumstance. Forms required for the IC approval process are linked below or included in the following policies and procedures:

Once the agreement is signed, the independent contractor is subject to the direction or control of the University only as to the end result, not as to the methods and means used to accomplish that result. Originating departments are to seek confirmation of independent contractor status from Accounts Payable prior to making any employment commitment or preparing any payment request form(s).

Tax Information

Independent contractors will be issued a Federal tax Form 1099-NEC by January 31 of the year following their service if they were paid at least $600 in the prior calendar year. In some instances, the independent contractor payment might be subject to tax withholding (see Policy 707 – NC Income Tax Withholding Requirements for Non-Wage Compensation Paid to Nonresidents).

Independent Contractors Who Are Not US Citizens

Foreign IC requests and questions should be sent to, and should follow the appropriate procedures above. Relevant forms include:

If you need any additional assistance, please review the FAQs on the Domestic Vendors page. If you are still have questions, please contact the Vendor Coordinator directly at