As the independent workforce continues to grow, so do the issues of worker compliance and misclassification. It is important for enterprises to remain informed about the latest laws, regulations, and developments surrounding these topics. Each month, we’ll bring you the latest news stories from around the web.
In April, the California Supreme Court adopted a new standard for determining if a worker is an employee or independent contractor—the ABC test. The new test makes it significantly more difficult for an entity to classify a worker as an independent contractor.
The California Chamber of Commerce, joined by a number of other organizations and companies, requested the legislature to address the decision and adopt a more balanced approach to classifying workers. In addition, a number of gig firms asked the legislature to address the ruling.
While businesses and industry organizations strongly support modifying the ruling, labor organizations are opposed to any change. The California legislature is not going to address the decision this term. Both the Assembly Speaker and the Senate President Pro Tem said that there wasn’t enough time before the of the legislative session to thoughtfully address the new test. Employers in California will have to cope with the Dynamex decision at least until next year.
In July, the Wage and Hour Division of the DOL issued a Field Assistance Bulletin (FAB) with guidance on how to classify workers in the caregiver registry industry. The FAB says it will consider the “totality of the circumstances” in determining whether a worker is an employee or independent contractor.
The “totality of circumstances” approach is a more traditional approach to classifying workers and includes factors such as who controls the manner and means of doing the work. The DOL offers guidance on what will and will not be considered in determining whether a worker is an employee. Some of the factors are:
This FAB is a step back from the 2015 Administrative Interpretation which stated that most workers were employees under the FLSA. With the guidance in this FAB, a registry can avoid being determined to be an employer.
The Louisiana Workforce Commission (LWC) conducted unannounced inspections of construction worksites based on credible tips looking for construction workers who were misclassified as independent contractors.
LWC visited construction sites in New Orleans by unemployment insurance tax auditors and workers compensation authorities. These inspections are part of Louisiana’s efforts to fight misclassification of workers.
For more information, check out our resources page on misclassification and compliance, or contractor engagement best practices. If you have any questions about engagement, classification, or management of your independent workforce, we’re always here to help.
Employee misclassification affects business owners, workers, and the government. The cost of misclassification on businesses and what organizations can do to minimize risk.
A monthly summary of independent contractor misclassification and compliance news. This is the March, 2018 edition.