Earlier this month, officials at the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) released new guidelines to help clarify how employers should classify employees versus independent contractors.
This issue of misclassifying workers has become increasingly prominent in recent years, as numerous companies have come under fire for misclassifying workers and, in doing so, compromising their rights. Among these companies have been Uber and Lyft, as we pointed out in a recent blog.
Why Worker Misclassification Is So Problematic
As the DOL explains, worker misclassification is “one of the most serious problems facing affected workers, employers and the entire economy.” The DOL has elaborated in its new guidelines that:
Misclassification of employees as independent contractors is found in an increasing number of workplaces in the United States, in part reflecting larger restructuring of business organizations.
When employers improperly classify employees as independent contractors, the employees may not receive important workplace protections such as the minimum wage, overtime compensation, unemployment insurance, and workers’ compensation. Misclassification also results in lower tax revenues for government and an uneven playing field for employers who properly classify their workers.
The DOL Recommendations: How to Avoid Misclassifying Workers
The DOL’s 15-page initiative contains some in-depth guidelines for employers to rely on when classifying employees versus independent contractors. Essentially, the DOL has highlighted the fact that “most workers are employees“ and that workers who are “economically dependent” on employers should generally be classified and treated as employees.
Labor law experts say that the new guidelines will make it hard for companies to classify their workers as independent contractors.
Contact the Los Angeles Employment Lawyers at Broslavsky & Weinman, LLP
If you have been misclassified as an independent contractor by an employer – or if you believe your employer has violated any of your rights as a worker, contact the experienced Los Angeles employment lawyers at Broslavsky & Weinman, LLP for experienced help advocating your rights and pursuing justice.
To find out more about how we can help you, contact us today to set up a free initial consult with one of our lawyers. You can call our firm at (310) 575-2550 or email us using the contact form on this page to schedule this meeting.