Right to Control

News & Analysis as of

New Technologies Test the Limits of the Duty to Preserve, Collect and Produce Information in Civil Discovery

While the question of whether specific records are within a party’s possession, custody or control has been heavily litigated for years, the digital revolution — with the advent of social media, cloud computing and mobile...more

Employers Beware! Government Agencies Are Out To Bust You For Misclassifying Your Employees As Independent Contractors

Both federal and state labor authorities are hot on the trail of companies who hire employees and call them “independent contractors.” The United States Department of Labor (DOL) has entered into a Memorandum of...more

Joint Employer Liability on the Rise

The Issue: Could my company be liable as a joint employer for Labor Code violations of our subsidiary or third-party staffing company?...more

Fissured Employment – the Government Has Set Its Sights on You

For centuries, businesses have used subcontracting arrangements, franchise agreements or otherwise contracted out the performance of some functions third parties. The business reasons for such actions are obvious: it allows...more

Testing the “Joint Employer” Waters

PK Law recently reported on the filing of a complaint by the General Counsel for the National Labor Relations Board (“NLRB”) against McDonald’s Corporation to the effect that McDonald’s was a “joint employer” with its...more

Employers Beware: Could the Generosity of Volunteers Result in a Perceived Employer-Employee Relationship?

The generosity of volunteers builds a link between employers and the community, which frequently proves critical to accomplishing community and philanthropic work during times of need. Often times, there is too much to be...more

Employers: CA Court of Appeal Rules On-Duty Rest Breaks Permitted

In late January, a California Court of Appeal issued a ruling in Augustus v. ABM Security Services, Inc., overturning a $90 million award against the company because ABM required its security guards to keep their radios and...more

Is it Any Surprise to Anyone that Uber and Lyft Drivers Are Employees?

Why is anyone surprised to learn that the judges hearing two class actions involving Uber and Lyft drivers in California are leaning towards holding that the drivers are employees, and not independent contractors? At the...more

A Couple Of Things To Know Before Bringing A Piercing The Corporate Veil Claim

You might remember the case of  Cold Springs Ventures, LLC v. Gilead Sciences, Inc..  Last year, Judge Jolly stayed an arbitration proceeding pending a ruling on a piercing the corporate veil claim.  If you are a reader of...more

It’s All in the Family: Shifting Standards for Joint-Employer Liability

The concept of joint-employer liability is popping up in the news a lot again. This is because the NLRB is taking a more aggressive view on joint-employer standards under the National Labor Relations Act, particularly as to...more

Employment Alert: Security Guards Entitled to Compensation for On-Call Hours Spent Under Employer’s Control

In Mendiola v. CPS Sec. Solutions, Inc., 2015 WL 107082, published January 8, 2015, the California Supreme Court held that: (1) on-call hours at a worksite represented “hours worked” for overtime purposes when the employer...more

No Lullaby for Employers: California Supreme Court Finds Sleep Periods Considered 'Hours Worked'

In Mendiola v. CPS Security Solutions, Inc., S212704 (Jan. 8 2015), California’s Supreme Court reaffirmed the rule that “hours worked” under California law includes all hours an employee is under the employer’s control, even...more

Employers Finally Get a Break—Court Reverses $90 Million Verdict and Holds That Employers Are Not Required to Relieve Employees of...

On December 31, 2014, the Court of Appeal for the Second District of California held in an unpublished opinion that employers are not required to relieve employees of all duty during rest periods mandated by California state...more

Monster Bites Back, Accuses Beats of Monstrous Scam

It’s a monster movie cliché – near the end, when the monster is “dead,” the dust is settling and the heroes are patting each other on the back, the monster rises from the dead and goes on one more rampage before it expires....more

Franchise arrangements pose legal problem for NLRB’s proposed joint-employer standard

The National Labor Relations Board’s general counsel, who is recommending that the Board dramatically alter the joint-employer doctrine, admitted that his proposal may run into “a problem legally” when it comes to...more

For Single-Enterprise Immunity, the Bottom Line May Be Having One Bottom Line

A federal court in Ohio has provided some of the clearest guidance to date on the application of the single-enterprise immunity doctrine to healthcare organizations. The single-enterprise immunity doctrine is critically...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

Titles Matter for Books, Not for Employers (or, How to be Jointly Liable as an Employer Even if You’d Rather Not Be)

Rarely does a court articulate a legal position so clearly that it can’t be stated any plainer. Such is the case in Castaneda v. The Ensign Group, Inc.: “A corporation with no employees owns a corporation with...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

Parent Company Ordered to Produce Documents in Response to Request to Subsidiary Where Parent and Subsidiary Shared Servers and...

Plaintiff Dri-Steem Corporation ("Dri-Steem") sought production of documents in the possession and control of the defendant's parent company National Environmental Products, Ltd. ("National"), via its wholly-owned subsidiary...more

Withdrawal Liability - A Concealed but Potentially Devastating Assessment

During the past several years a hidden liability has been lurking in the shadows. This hidden threat is known as withdrawal liability and is a critical issue that any employer with a unionized workforce needs to be cognizant...more

JOINT EMPLOYER: When is a company considered the employer of another company’s employees?

During the last several months, a number of government agencies and courts have taken the position that a company can be considered the employer of another company’s employees for purposes of employment law obligations. Most...more

Franchisor Not Liable for Sexual Harassment of Franchisee's Employee under FEHA

In Patterson v. Domino's Pizza, LLC, the California Supreme Court took on the issue of whether a franchisor is an "employer" of its franchisee's employees under the Fair Employment and Housing Act ("FEHA") and therefore...more

Claims of Branding, Acquisition and Control Satisfy Single-Employer Test

The Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act (WARN Act) was enacted in 1988 to allow workers to adjust to the prospective loss of employment from a plant closing or mass layoff. It requires employers to give affected...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

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