Independent Contractors Misclassification

Independent contractors are individuals or entities that perform work for other individuals or entities, but are not employees of those individuals or entities. Whether a worker is an employee or an independent... more +
Independent contractors are individuals or entities that perform work for other individuals or entities, but are not employees of those individuals or entities. Whether a worker is an employee or an independent contractor is not always an easy determination. However, due to differences in tax and liability treatment, misclassifying an employee as an independent contractor can have serious consequences. Autonomy is the defining feature of independent contractor arrangements. Independent contractors control the manner and method of how work is performed while payers control the desired result. Control over schedule and number of hours worked, ownership of equipment or tools, permanency of relationship, and acceptance of jobs from multiple entities are all possible factors in determining whether a worker is an employee or independent contractor.   less -
News & Analysis as of

Federal Ninth Circuit Court Of Appeals Rules FedEx Drivers Are Employees, Not Independent Contractors, Under Both California's and...

Class actions were brought against FedEx in both California and Oregon by FedEx drivers contending they had been misclassified as independent contractors. (Alexander, et al. v. FedEx Ground Package System, Inc. and Slayman,...more

Quirky Question # 238, No Laughing Matter – Company Found Liable for Wrongfully Terminating Independent Contractor’s Agreement

Question: My company relies on independent contractors, over whom we don’t exert control. They often joke around with each other. I’m not liable for employment discrimination if I terminate one of them after they...more

No Laughing Matter: Company Found Liable for Wrongfully Terminating Independent Contractor’s Agreement after a Complaint about a...

Companies using independent contractors should be aware of increased enforcement efforts from federal and state labor and tax authorities over misclassification of workers under wage and hour and tax laws. In Washington, this...more

July 2014 Monthly Independent Contractor Compliance and Misclassification Update

The leading development this month in the area of independent contractor compliance and misclassification is an Arizona case that deals with a commonplace event – but one that carries with it the potential for unanticipated...more

California Supreme Court Makes It Easier For Workers in Misclassification Cases To Obtain Class Certification

Employment class action litigation is often won or lost with a class certification ruling. If the employer is successful in opposing class certification, then these cases often go away with little or no fanfare and limited...more

Benesch Perspectives - July 2014 Newsletter

In this issue: - Not-for-Profit Spotlight - Giving to Religion Trending Downward for a Decade - What You Can Learn from Giving 2014 - Is the Front Door Closing on the Parsonage...more

Motor Carriers Face Uphill Battle After California Supreme Court Decision

Harris v. Pac Anchor Transportation, Inc., No. S194388 (July 28, 2014): In a unanimous decision, the California Supreme Court has held that the Federal Aviation Administration Authorization Act of 1994 (FAAAA) does not...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

The Supremes Sing Out About Control: It is the Primary Test for Deciding Whether a Worker is an Employee or an Independent...

In December 2008, newspaper carrier Maria Ayala sued Antelope Valley Newspapers on behalf of herself and a putative class of other newspaper carriers. The crux of her allegations in the complaint is that Antelope Valley...more

Employment Law – Delivery Drivers Wrongfully Classified as Independent Contractors Rather Than Employees

Fernando Ruiz, et al. v. Affinity Logistics Corp. - United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit (June 16, 2014) - The causes of action that can be asserted against an employer often depend on whether...more

California Supreme Court Holds Independent Contractor Misclassification Claims Can Be Determined by Common Proof – But Only in...

In its first employment-related class certification decision since its seminal ruling in Duran v. U.S. Bank, the California Supreme Court, in a fragmented opinion, reversed the denial of class certification for a group of...more

Arizona District Court Rejects Joint Employer Arguments in Independent Contractor Case Alleging Misclassification of Truck Drivers

A month ago we discussed the Ninth Circuit’s decision in Ruiz v. Affinity Logistics Corp., Case No. 12-56589 (9th Cir. June 16, 2014), in which the employer treated its delivery drivers as employees in everything but name,...more

Did You Know…California Supreme Court Holds That a Challenge to Independent Contractor Status Is Class Certifiable

In Ayala v. Antelope Valley Newspapers the California Supreme Court held that the critical factor in determining whether a worker is an employee or an independent contractor is “the degree of a hirer’s right to control how...more

California Supreme Court Nixes Certification Denial Ruling Against Newspaper Carriers Classified as Independent Contractors

The California Supreme Court recently held that a trial court needed to revisit its class certification decision regarding newspaper carriers who alleged that they should have been classified as employees rather than...more

California Supreme Court Addresses Test for Independent Contractor Status and Class Certification of Independent Contractor...

Employers frequently struggle with determining when a service provider should be classified as an independent contractor, as opposed to an "employee." Getting the answer to that question wrong can prove significant in many...more

California Employment Law Notes - July 2014

"Unauthorized Alien" Who Provided False SSN Can Proceed With Disability Discrimination Lawsuit - Salas v. Sierra Chem. Co., 2014 WL 2883878 (Cal. S. Ct. 2014) Vicente Salas worked on Sierra Chemical's production...more

Senate Finance Committee Considering Measure to Largely Repeal IRC Section 530 Safe Harbor for Most Businesses Using Independent...

Sen. Sherrod Brown (D.Ohio) reintroduced the “Fair Playing Field Act,” S.1706, in November 2013. The bill, which first appeared in 2010 under then-Senator John Kerry’s sponsorship, purports to close an ostensible loophole in...more

Lowe’s Settles Independent Contractor Misclassification Case

Buying something at Lowe’s? Need help putting it where it belongs, hooking it up, making it work? “Get it installed by a Lowe’s professional,” Lowe’s advertises....more

California Supreme Court Leaves Unanswered Questions in Independent Contractor Case

On Monday, June 30, 2014, the California Supreme Court handed down its decision in Ayala v. Antelope Valley Newspapers, a lawsuit brought on behalf of a group of newspaper delivery carriers who alleged that they had been...more

Extra! Extra! Read All About It: California Supreme Court Affirms Reversal of Class Certification Denial for Class of Newspaper...

The California Supreme Court in Ayala v. Antelope Valley Newspapers, Inc. recently affirmed and remanded the reversal of a denial of class certification in an independent contractor misclassification case, emphasizing the...more

California Supreme Court Eases Path Toward Class Certification of Independent Contractor Misclassification Claims

In Ayala v. Antelope Valley Newspapers, Inc., the California Supreme Court set forth the legal standard for determining whether independent contractor misclassification claims can be brought on a classwide basis, or must be...more

Court Awards Fees And Costs Against USDOL

A Texas federal court has ordered the U.S. Labor Department to pay more than $560,000 in attorney's fees, paralegal fees, and travel expenses growing out of litigation under the federal Fair Labor Standards Act. USDOL...more

Delivery Drivers Classified As Employees Despite Signed Agreement Purporting To Establish Independent Contractor Relationship

Recently, the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, applying California law, concluded that delivery drivers who signed agreements stating they were independent contractors and not employees would still be...more

InterConnect FLASH! No. 39 - Recent Court Decisions Reflect the Rule of Reason: Totality of the Circumstances Regains Traction

Two recent court decisions from two different jurisdictions, issued several weeks apart, reflect a more balanced and reasonable approach for determining worker classification issues based on the totality of the facts and...more

Connecticut Congressman Sponsors “Payroll Fraud Prevention Act”

Readers of this blog will be aware that the misclassification of employees as independent contractors has been a major concern of state and federal authorities for several years. Employers don’t provide workers compensation...more

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