Misclassification

News & Analysis as of

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

FRANCHISEE 101: Independent Contractors or Employees?

In Ruiz v. Affinity Logistics Corporation, another recent delivery driver case that arose in California, Affinity Logistics' drivers claimed they were employees and had been misclassified as independent contractors. The trial...more

Employment and Immigration Issues Facing Banks

EMPLOYMENT ISSUES - 1. No compensation for compensable work - Many banks—including large, sophisticated banks—are facing class action lawsuits for not compensating non-exempt employees for compensable work....more

$4.5 million wage settlement for Pa. and WVa. workers in oil and natural gas industry

On Tuesday, December 9, 2014, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) announced that it has reached agreement with numerous employers in the oil and natural gas industry in Pennsylvania and West Virginia to provide 5,310 workers...more

Rhode Island Establishes Tip Line For Worker Misclassification

Rhode Island’s Joint Task Force on the Underground Economy and Employee Misclassification announced earlier this month that it has set up an anonymous telephone tip line for reporting allegations of independent contractor...more

Aggressive FLSA Enforcement May Now Mean Jail Time

The recent arrest of a New York restaurant owner for failing to pay her employees minimum wage and overtime pay highlights the aggressive efforts currently used to enforce employment laws like the Fair Labor Standards Act...more

Nevada Supreme Court Finds Class of Strippers Were Employees

Given the extensive use of euphemisms in the exotic dancing trade, we’ll apologize in advance for any unintended puns. We’ve written on the issue of the classification of exotic dancers or strippers in the past [April...more

Shake It Off: Employer Misclassification of Exotic Dancers under the Fair Labor Standards Act

Recently, there’s been a wave of Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”) rulings adverse to employers in the adult entertainment industry. Early this year, a Southern District of New York judge approved an $8 million settlement for...more

November 2014 Independent Contractor Compliance and Misclassification Update

This month’s headline developments are two independent contractor misclassification class action lawsuits: one was filed in New York against a Silicon Valley giant, Google Inc., and the second was filed in California against...more

Joe’s Crab Shack Managers Move Forward with Class Action Wage and Hour Misclassification Suit Despite Plaintiffs’ Inability to...

Last week, the California Court of Appeal for the Second Appellate District reversed a trial court’s class certification denial in a proposed overtime class action brought by Joe’s Crab Shack managers against the restaurant...more

Independent No More: The Crackdown on the Use of Independent Contractors

For years, many employers have tried to reduce their tax burdens by treating persons who perform services for them as individual contractors as opposed to employees and thereby reducing the payroll withholding taxes they must...more

DOL Refills States’ War Chests for Independent Contractor Misclassification Crackdown

The U.S. Department of Labor has awarded $10.2 million in grants to 19 states for continued independent contractor misclassification detection and enforcement. The grants are focused on unemployment insurance programs and,...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

New California Law Imposes Joint Liability on Businesses and Contract Vendors for Wage Violations and Workers’ Compensation...

For companies using independent contractors in California, 2014 has been a difficult year, with several significant court decisions threatening the contractor model. In June, the Ninth Circuit rejected the parties’ choice of...more

Employer Prevails on Misclassification Claim Where Employee Fails to Prove Hours Worked

Greg Holaway worked as a Field Service Engineer for Stratasys, Inc. He was categorized as exempt from the provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) requiring the payment of overtime. Even though his title was...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

Employment Law Update - Independent Contractors: The NLRB Refines its Standards

Whether an individual is classified as an independent contractor or an employee has significant legal implications, because most federal and state employment laws do not apply to independent contractors. Independent...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

October 2014 Independent Contractor Compliance and Misclassification Update

- TAX COURT DECISION REMINDS COMPANIES THAT “OFFICERS” ARE STATUTORY EMPLOYEES AND THEREFORE CANNOT BE INDEPENDENT CONTRACTORS. The United States Tax Court held that a company that was engaged in the buying, reconditioning,...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

Employment Law - Oct 2014 #3

DOL Grants Could Signal More Misclassification Actions - Why it matters: Employers have faced a tidal wave of litigation over the alleged misclassification of employees as independent contractors, with workers ranging...more

An Employee is an Employee is an Employee: Alexander v. FedEx Ground

In the 1920s, author Gertrude Stein famously said, “A rose is a rose is a rose.” In light of Alexander v. FedEx Ground, that phrase could just as well be: an employee is an employee is an employee. Alexander is one of many...more

State and Federal Departments of Labor Joining Forces to Fight Employee Misclassification

Last month, major North Carolina newspapers ran a series of investigative reports alleging that construction companies with federal contracts routinely misclassify employees as independent contractors. While these articles...more

Wage Order—Not Borello—Applies in Independent Contractor Status Test Says California Court of Appeal

The California Court of Appeal, Second District, issued an opinion on October 15, 2014, that considered whether the definition of “employee” from the Industrial Welfare Commission Wage Order No. 9 (Wage Order) or the common...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

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