Legal puzzle

Suppose that Alice owns a home with more rooms then she need for herself. Therefore she offers one room to Bob, on condition he performs 12 hours of housework a week. He agrees.

How would you classify this contract?

  • a rental contract with rent paid in kind, or
  • an employment contract with wage paid in kind.

Please leave your answer with arguments as a comment.

5 thoughts on “Legal puzzle”

  1. Rental contract with payment in kind.
    There is no where you mention Bob was looking for employment. We assume he is employed but can’t find a place to put up

  2. It is both a rental contract and a personal services contract (Bob is an independent contractor, not an employee) which may be in conflict depending on applicable laws regulating rental housing and personal services.

    To avoid any potential legal conflicts, two separate contracts should be in effect: Alice rents a room to Bob for $X.XX per week, and Bob performs 12 hours of housework per week for the exact same amount.

    1. The line between an independent contractor and an employee can be very thin sometimes, depending upon jurisdiction.

      I agree with you that have having two separate contracts would be advisable. Though it might not avoid all conflicts, it would provide more clarity if trouble would arise.

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