Misclassification

News & Analysis as of

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

US Department of Labor to Aggressively Pursue Misclassification Matters

Employers have many ways of getting into trouble. We hope that after reading this you will avoid one of them; namely, misclassifying employees as independent contractors. ...more

“Black Car” Drivers Found to be Independent Contractors

Recently, courts in highly-publicized independent contractor misclassification cases in the transportation sector have issued determinations finding the workers to be employees. However, a recent decision from the Southern...more

California District Court Finds Bankrupt Named Plaintiffs Not Adequate Representatives

Anyone questioning whether the Supreme Court’s decision in Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. v. Dukes, 131 S. Ct. 2541 (2011), has had an impact need look no further than the decision in Alakozai v. Chase Investment Services Corp., Case...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

Alabama Heightens Attention on Misclassified Employees

The U.S. Department of Labor continues its “misclassification initiative” by adding Alabama to its list of state partners. On October 2, 2014, Alabama Labor Commissioner Fitzgerald Washington and DOL regional director Wayne...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

NLRB Adopts New Test for Independent Contractor Misclassification, Applies it to Find FedEx Drivers are Employees Who Can Unionize

The NLRB has tossed a new vegetable into the enormous salad of independent contractor misclassification tests. As companies might expect, the new vegetable smells rotten. Companies who wish to analyze whether their...more

Misclassification Initiatives Spread as Alabama Signs Formal Pact with DOL

On October 2, 2014, the Alabama Department of Labor and the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) entered into a formal Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) or agreement to share information regarding independent contractor...more

Court of Appeal Denies Certification in Another Misclassification Overtime Class Action

In the latest installment in a series of recent employment class actions, the Court of Appeal for Ontario has dismissed an appeal by class action plaintiffs in Brown v Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce. The decision...more

First Circuit Favors Broad Application of Analogue to Airline Deregulation Act Preemption Provision

On September 30, 2014, in Massachusetts Delivery Association v. Coakley, No. 13-2307 (September 30, 2014), the First Circuit Court of Appeals overturned a lower court’s refusal to preempt a Massachusetts independent...more

September 2014 Independent Contractor Compliance and Misclassification Update

This month’s headline developments are the crescendo of cases finding against FedEx Ground’s classification of drivers as independent contractors. On the heels of last month’s decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the...more

FedEx Hit with Avalanche of Independent Contractor Misclassification Rulings

In the past week, the Supreme Court of Kansas and the National Labor Relations Board have issued lengthy, comprehensive opinions finding that FedEx misclassified its Home Delivery and Ground Division drivers as independent...more

NLRB Refines Test for Determining Independent Contractor Status Versus Employee Status

The National Labor Relations Board has published a decision (FedEx Home Delivery, 361 NLRB No. 55) holding FedEx delivery drivers to be employees under the National Labor Relations Act instead of independent contractors. This...more

NLRB Refines Its Test for Independent Contractor Status

The National Labor Relations Board, with one member dissenting, has issued a decision in which it “refines” the test it uses for determining whether it will find individuals performing services for an employer to be...more

New California Law Imposes Costly Risks to Companies Using Independent Contractors Supplied by Staffing and Recruiting Firms – But...

On September 28, 2014, Governor Jerry Brown of California signed a bill that puts a potentially enormous liability risk on companies that use workers supplied by “labor contractors” that fail to pay all wages due the workers....more

Employment Law - Oct 2014

The Need to Correctly Classify Employees - Why it matters: Providing a $1.25 million lesson in the importance of correctly classifying employees, the Oakland Raiders settled a lawsuit brought by the team’s cheerleading...more

California Legislative Update: September 2014

In September 2014, California Governor Jerry Brown signed into law a number of bills that will impact the employer community. Healthy Workplaces, Healthy Families Act of 2014—Paid Sick Leave (AB 1522) - On...more

Recent Case Reminds Companies That, Though Much Embattled, Independent Contractor Classifications Can Be Valid

The dividing line between employees and independent contractors has been a hot topic in employment law for several years. In addition to the interest the federal government has taken in possible misclassification of...more

Employment Flash - September 2014

In This Issue: - SEC Pays First Whistleblower Award to Audit and Compliance Professional - Supreme Court Allows Affordable Care Act Contraceptives Religious Exemption - EEOC Adopts New Pregnancy...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

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