New York City freelancer law to take effect May 15

April 25, 2017 0 COMMENTS

by Zach Morahan and Shannon Kane

New York City’s new “Freelance Isn’t Free Act,” which goes into effect May 15, requires written contracts for many freelance jobs worth $800 or more and provides for stiff monetary remedies if the hiring party tries to avoid paying the freelancer for work performed.

Under the new law, a “freelance worker” means any person or organization composed of no more than one person who is hired as an independent contractor in exchange for compensation. Commissioned sales representatives and attorneys are excluded from the definition of freelance worker. The definition of “hiring party” excludes foreign, federal, state, and local municipalities.

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New Arizona law allows independent contractors to declare their status

July 25, 2016 0 COMMENTS

by Dinita L. James
Gonzalez Law, LLC

A new Arizona law going into effect on August 6 will allow independent contractors to provide a declaration of their independence to businesses using their services.

The law provides a form called a declaration of independent business status (DIBS) to help determine whether a worker should be classified as an independent contractor or an employee.

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Uber settlement keeps independent contractor business model

April 22, 2016 0 COMMENTS

Drivers for ride-hailing giant Uber will continue to be independent contractors under the terms of a settlement of class-action lawsuits in California and Massachusetts if the settlement receives court approval.

The settlement, announced on April 21, will require the company to pay drivers an initial $84 million and possibly as much as $100 million. Despite the financial hit, Uber is claiming victory in what it calls the key issue in the lawsuits—whether its drivers should be classified as independent contractors or employees. That question is likely to come up again, according to an attorney following developments affecting the use of independent contractors in the “sharing economy.”

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Independent contractor model survives Lyft settlement

January 28, 2016 0 COMMENTS

Lyft, a ride-hailing service that uses independent contractors as drivers, has agreed to settle a proposed class action lawsuit in California by paying $12.25 million and giving drivers certain protections, but the settlement doesn’t call on the company to reclassify its drivers as employees.

The larger ride-hailing service Uber also is facing court action. The Uber lawsuit is certified as a class action and is scheduled for a June trial to determine whether its drivers are employees or contractors.

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Time for California employers to be ready for $10 minimum wage

December 28, 2015 0 COMMENTS

by Elizabeth J. Boca

The minimum wage in California will increase from $9 to $10 an hour as of January 1. Employers must understand that paying the higher minimum wage alone doesn’t satisfy their obligations because the upcoming increase will spark a domino effect in various compliance areas.  monimum wage increase ahead

Exempt “white-collar” employees. Each time the state minimum wage increases, so does the minimum salary required for exempt white-collar employees. Under Labor Code Section 515, to qualify as exempt from overtime as an executive, administrative, or professional employee, a worker must earn a monthly salary equivalent to at least two times the state minimum wage for full-time employment totaling 40 hours per week, or 2,080 hours per year.

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Uber class action ruling expected to have national implications

September 02, 2015 0 COMMENTS

A San Francisco judge’s ruling granting class action status to possibly thousands of Uber drivers carries implications that “go well beyond California,” according to an attorney closely watching the case.

U.S. District Judge Edward Chen ruled September 1 that a group of Uber drivers in California can sue as a class as they argue that they should be considered employees instead of independent contractors.

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New guidance signals tougher stance on independent contractor classification

July 15, 2015 0 COMMENTS

A new interpretation of language in the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) is the latest effort in the government’s fight against what it sees as troubling misclassification of employees as independent contractors.

On July 15, David Weil, administrator of the U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL) Wage and Hour Division (WHD), released Administrator’s Interpretation 2015-1 to analyze how the FLSA determines whether an individual should be classified as an employee or an independent contractor.

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New Maine law on independent contractors goes into effect December 31

December 17, 2012 0 COMMENTS

by Peter D. Lowe

Maine employers need to pay attention to a new Maine law on the definition of “independent contractor” that goes into effect December 31.

Legislative Document 1314, passed in Maine earlier this year, outlines two sets of conditions that must be in place for an individual to qualify as an independent contractor for purposes of workers’ compensation and unemployment compensation. In the first tier of criteria, to meet the definition of an independent contractor, an individual must:

  • Have the “essential” right to control the particulars of the work (except the final results);
  • Be engaged in an “independently established” business;
  • Have the opportunity to experience either a profit or a loss as a result of the services performed;
  • Hire, pay, and supervise the work of any assistants; and
  • Make his services available to other clients or consumers in the community.

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OFCCP Reveals Glimpses of Enforcement Plans Targeting Federal Contractors

April 27, 2010 0 COMMENTS

Early Tuesday morning, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) resumed its ongoing series of agency Web chats with a brief session hosted by Patricia Shiu, the director of the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP). The OFCCP enforces the civil rights of both federal contractor employees as well as applicants for federal contractor jobs. According to the OFCCP, approximately 22 percent of the American workforce is employed by federal contractors.

Director Shiu discussed the OFCCP’s regulatory priorities for the coming year, noting that strengthening construction regulations — particularly in the area of affirmative action requirements — will be the key item on the agency’s spring agenda. The agency specifically plans to update and amend the regulations that detail affirmative action program requirements for federal construction contractors. The agency will specifically look at rules dealing with recruitment, training, and apprenticeships.

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