Employee Definition

News & Analysis as of

Job Applicant Denied Whistleblower Protection in Sixth Circuit

Job applicants lack standing to bring whistleblower retaliation claims under the False Claims Act (FCA) and the Energy Reorganization Act (ERA) because they are not “employees,” according to the Sixth Circuit Court of...more

To Be, or Not to Be an Independent Contractor—That Is the Question.

I often receive calls that begin with a story like this: “We had the maintenance guy do this project for us a year or two ago, and we really liked him, so we kept him on. We just 1099 him each year. No problem with that,...more

New Hampshire Department of Labor and U.S. DOL Agree to Work Together Against Misclassification

The U.S. Department of Labor (“U.S. DOL”) and the New Hampshire Department of Labor recently signed a memorandum of understanding to share information regarding independent contractor misclassification. The agreement is part...more

Can I Get Workers' Comp If I'm Paid On A 1099

This is a legal question that depends on the facts of each case. So, the short answer to it is that even though you get a 1099 and your “employer” tells you that you’re an independent contractor doesn’t mean you can’t get...more

Gentlemen’s Club Cannot Strip Dancers of Employee Status

We mentioned early last year that the U.S. Department of Labor intended to start cracking down on the (mis)classification of workers as independent contractors. All is not lost however, as we also recently discussed a New...more

$10.2 Million Awarded by DOL to Detect Worker Misclassification

Recently, the U.S. Department of Labor announced awards of $10,225,183 in grants to 19 states to implement or improve worker misclassification detection and enforcement initiatives in their unemployment insurance programs. ...more

Supreme Court Declines to Hear Challenge of Illinois Independent Contractor Classification Law

On October 14, 2014, the Supreme Court of the United States refused to consider a challenge to the Illinois Employee Classification Act, which classifies workers in the construction industry as employees unless they can meet...more

Doctors and Lawyers and Such

When doctors and lawyers get sideways with their business partners, they might dispute whether one or more of them are really “employees.” In a recent case, an anesthesiologist alleged disability and sex discrimination. To...more

FLSA Wage and Hour Lawsuit Filed against NCAA

A putative collective action on behalf of college athletes, Sackos v. National Collegiate Athletic Association, was recently filed in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana against the National...more

Worker Classification Litigation on the Rise — An Analysis of the Ninth Circuit’s FedEx Case and Its Lessons for Tax Practitioners

Abraham Lincoln reportedly asked, ‘‘If you call a dog’s tail a leg, how many legs does a dog have?’’ His answer was, ‘‘Four. Calling a dog’s tail a leg does not make it a leg.’’ Similarly, when businesses classify workers,...more

Seventh Circuit Reminds Attorneys to Conduct “Reasonable Amount of Legal Research” Before Filing Claims

Under the federal civil rights statutes, plaintiffs who prevail ordinarily receive an award of attorneys’ fees that must be paid by the defendant. But, in order not to deter plaintiffs from filing such claims, the reverse is...more

Conservative Kansas Joins the Liberal Ninth Circuit in Rejecting the Independent Contractor Classification of Delivery Drivers

Last month we blogged about two Ninth Circuit opinions that deemed FedEx Ground drivers to be employees rather than independent contractors under California and Oregon law. Last week the Kansas Supreme Court joined them,...more

But Wait . . . My Workers Are Independent Contractors, Right?

Following the U.S. Department of Labor’s recent release of its Memorandum of Understanding (“MOU”) with the Alabama Department of Labor, employers should not rest easy simply because they classify their workers as independent...more

Labor & Employment E-Note - October 2014

In this Issue: - High Court Considers If Workers Waiting in Line Should Get Paid - Some States Putting Minimum Wage Battle on Ballot - U.S. Labor Department Promoting Paid Maternity Leave - EEOC...more

Flash No. 43 - A Favorable Decision Regarding the Massachusetts "ABC" Test

The saga surrounding the challenges to the Massachusetts “ABC” Test for independent contractors has taken a potentially positive turn for the transportation industry. A decision issued by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the...more

NLRB Rejects Opportunity

On September 30, 2014, the NLRB rejected the opinion of the District of Columbia Circuit in FedEx Home Delivery v. NLRB, 563 F.3d 492 (D.C. Cir. 2009) and found that an individual’s entrepreneurial opportunity for gain or...more

Misclassified Employees Not Barred From Recovering Damages Based on Value of ERISA Plan Benefits They Should Have Been Provided:...

A federal court has held that plaintiffs who proved they had been misclassified as independent contractors, and should have been considered employees, could recover money damages under state law based on the value of the...more

Recent Oregon Decision: A Warning on Independent Contractor Classification

Do your “independent contractors” work from your company’s offices? Do they market their own separate businesses? Do they have the right to hire others to perform the work they perform for you? If the answer to any of these...more

State Law Can Override Control Test for Employment

Past articles in this blog have discussed the control test for establishing an employment relationship as opposed to independent contractor status. Although government agencies such as the Department of Labor or IRS describe...more

Sea Change: Ninth Circuit Holds That FedEx Drivers Are Employees — Not Independent Contractors

The Ninth Circuit recently addressed the nearly decade long misclassification dispute between FedEx and its drivers, holding that drivers in California (as well as in Oregon) are FedEx employees, not independent contractors. ...more

Worker-Classification Lawsuit Claims Drivers Are Employees, Not Independent Contractors

A class-action suit recently filed in Massachusetts against an on-demand car service alleges the company misclassified its drivers as independent contractors instead of employees. As a result, according to the complaint, the...more

Flash No. 42 FedEx Ground Drivers Found to be Employees: A Sequel To Ruiz

In a decision issued on August 27, the Ninth Circuit Federal Court of Appeals, in a case captioned Alexander v. FedEx Ground Package System, determined that FedEx Ground drivers were employees as a matter of law under...more

Act Now Advisory: Massachusetts Passes Comprehensive Domestic Workers Law

On June 26, 2014, Massachusetts became the fourth state to pass a law designed to provide protections to domestic workers, which include nannies, housekeepers, caretakers of individuals in the home, and home companions. The...more

Store to Pay Up to $6.5 Million for Misclassifying Workers

A national home-improvement store recently agreed to pay thousands of California workers as much as $6.5 million for improperly labeling them independent contractors (IC) instead of employees....more

Joint Employment Finding Leads to Unexpected $3 Million Liability in Hospital Malpractice Case

When Washington Hospital obtained an insurance policy in 2003 to cover medical claims arising from acts by its employees, its insurer probably did not consider whether hospital employees included workers supplied by a...more

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