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Labor Commissioner's Uber Decision: A Reminder of Misclassification Dangers

On June 3, 2015, the California Labor Commissioner ruled that a San Francisco-based driver for the popular ride coordination service Uber Technologies, Inc. (“Uber”), was an employee rather than an independent contractor....more

Ninth Circuit Holds No Status Quo Obligation During First Contract Negotiations Under Railway Labor Act

On June 8, 2015, in International Brotherhood of Teamsters, Airlines Division v. Allegiant Air, LLC, No. 14-16465 (June 8, 2015), the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that under the Railway Labor Act (RLA), employers are...more

Ninth Circuit Overturns Injunction Against Air Carrier’s Unilateral Work Rule Changes During Bargaining for First Contract

The Railway Labor Act (RLA) did not require Allegiant Air to maintain the status quo with respect to work rules negotiated with an uncertified employee advocacy group during bargaining for a first contract with the Teamsters,...more

Uber’s ADA Conundrum

When you think of Uber (or similar companies like Lyft and Sidecar) you probably think of a transportation company. You request a ride on the company’s app and a driver (in his own vehicle) picks you up. The nature of the...more

Senate Approves Auto Industry Whistleblower Bill

Under the “Motor Vehicle Safety Whistleblower Act” (the Bill), which the U.S. Senate approved on April 28, 2015, whistleblower protections and bounties would be available to individuals who report motor vehicle defects. In...more

April 2015 Independent Contractor Compliance and Misclassification News Update

The leading news in the area of independent contractor compliance and misclassification in April 2015 is the settlement by Macy’s and its logistics company in New Jersey with the delivery drivers and their helpers used by...more

Tax Planning for International Transportation Income

According to the most recent estimates, the quantity of goods carried by containers has risen from around 100 million metric tons in 1980 to about 1.5 billion metric tons in 2012. Out of these numbers, one container in every...more

Massachusetts SJC Rules that Taxicab Drivers Are Independent Contractors Under the Wage Act

On April 21, 2015, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court (SJC) held in Sebago, et al. v. Boston Cab Dispatch, Inc., et al., that taxicab companies may classify taxicab drivers as independent contractors. The plaintiffs in...more

Supreme Court Expands Whistleblower Protections

The Supreme Court has been showing a tendency towards increasing whistleblower protections. The most recent installment of this trend was a recently decided case in which the Court granted whistleblower status to an Air...more

West Coast Ports Labor Turmoil - Time to Dust Off That Overlooked Force Majeure Clause?

The simmering labor dispute between the International Longshoreman and Warehouse Union and the Pacific Maritime Association, which represents West Coast port owners, has begun to capture the attention of businesses that have...more

What if the West Coast Ports Shut Down by Lockout or Strike? Is it Time to Invoke Taft-Hartley?

Since the expiration of a labor contract in July 2014, negotiations for a new contract have dragged on between management representatives of the Pacific Maritime Association (PMA)—a multi-employer bargaining association...more

Arbitration Clauses In Employment Contracts

The Federal Arbitration Act requires courts to enforce clauses in commercial contracts that require arbitration of disputes. The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that transportation workers engaged in interstate commerce are...more

Flash No. 44 - 2014 … A Year In Review

2014 was uncomfortably fast. When did you last write 2013 on a check or a letter by mistake? If you did, rest assured that you are not alone. So, while we still have a few weeks before we have to face the start of a new year...more

InterConnect - Summer 2014

In this issue: - Don’t Sail Too Close to the Wind: Enhancing Awareness of Intermodal Shipping Documents - NEMF Class Action Settlement Serves as a Reminder to Carriers to Ensure FCRA Compliance in...more

Delivery Drivers are Employees, Not Independent Contractors, Ninth Circuit Rules

Sometimes a title tells you all you need to know. If you listen to the 1969 Pink Floyd track, “Several Species of Small Furry Animals Gathered Together in a Cave and Grooving with a Pict,” you pretty much know what you are...more

The Impact of New Heavy Vehicle Regulations in the Road Transport Industry

With the Heavy Vehicle National Law (HVNL) beginning in February 2014 and the Road Safety Remuneration Tribunal's first Road Safety Remuneration Order (RSRO) commencing in early May 2014, this year promises to be challenging...more

What's Happening in Business Aviation? May 2013

This edition of the Burns & Levinson Business Aviation Report covers new developments in the following areas of business aviation: • Rentals from leasing aircraft may be subject to the new 3.8 percent tax on net...more

Florida Port Strike May Not Happen As Negotiations Continue Into 2013: News Release of the Week

Florida's economy needs its active and efficient ports and while on one hand, there's construction underway to make Port Miami big enough to deal with the increased traffic coming from the Panama Canal expansion, on the other...more

Strike Threatens Port of Charleston

After the latest breakdown in labor negotiations, ports along the U.S. East and Gulf coasts, including Charleston, are threatened with a strike by the International Longshoremen’s Association (ILA). The ILA and the...more

Ten Simple Suggestions for Avoiding Dealership Problems

As we move towards the end of 2012, most dealers continue to experience increased sales and improved profitability. Unfortunately, good times often engender complacency. When times are tough, dealers scrutinize operations,...more

California Court Validates Piece-Rate Pay for Drivers

In a significant victory for trucking companies operating in California, in Carson v. Knight Transportation, No. VCU234186, Tulare County Superior Court Judge Lloyd Hicks decertified a class of California truck drivers who...more

GUARDCON

All industry participants will be well aware of the difficulties caused by the recent flourishing of piracy in the western Indian Ocean and elsewhere. A whole vessel security industry continues to grow, particularly in Dubai,...more

Feds Hang Up On Commercial Drivers

In a continued effort to reduce accidents from distracted driving, the federal government has banned as of January 3, 2012, all commercial motor vehicle drivers from using hand-held mobile phones while driving. The new...more

Waiving Workers’ Compensation in Transportation Agreements: Like Taking a Bullet After Being Stabbed

Anyone reviewing a transportation agreement in the past few years surely noticed an uptick in the number of proposed provisions attempting to “waive workers’ compensation immunity.” The waiver typically reads as follows:...more

Airline Legal Alert: Status of NMB's Attempt to Change 75-Year-Old Majority Rule

On September 2, 2009, the Transportation Trades Department (TTD), AFL-CIO, petitioned the National Mediation Board (NMB) to change the 75-year-old majority rule, which requires a majority of eligible voters in a craft or...more

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