Bottom Line Human Resources Issues May 2018
Independent Contractors are Fading into the CA Sunset
By Kim Silvers, SPHR, PHR-CA, SHRM-SCP
The California Supreme Court recently ruled in the Dynamex Operations West, Inc. v. Superior Court that the Company’s independent contractor drivers were employees under a new definition. Dynamex is a nationwide package and document delivery company for retail stores, such as Office Depot and Home Depot. They have been dealing with a class action suit by the drivers for 13 years. The drivers claimed they were actually employees and, as a result, fell under the CA industrial Wage Order that afforded them additional rights for wages and how hours were paid. 

Prior to 2004, Dynamex classified its California drivers as employees and compensated them pursuant to this state’s wage and hour laws. In 2004, Dynamex converted all of its drivers to independent contractors after management concluded that such a conversion would generate economic savings for the company. Under their policy, all drivers were treated as independent contractors and required to provide their own vehicles and pay for all of their transportation expenses, including fuel, tolls, vehicle maintenance, and vehicle liability insurance, as well as all taxes and workers’ compensation insurance. Sounds like a screamin' deal, eh?
New Test for Unpaid Interns – Whew!
Are you considering hiring an intern this summer? Good news! The US Department of Labor (DOL) has issued new factors to determine if an intern may be unpaid and not considered an employee under the Fair Labor Standards Act. This is after several federal courts rejected the old six-part DOL test [1] . In December 2017, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals (which applies to CA) joined in rejecting the old six-part test as it determined students at a cosmetology school were the “primary beneficiaries” in their work at the school and were deemed to not be employees. ( Benjamin v. B & H Education, Inc. )
Long story short, the DOL’s seven factors to consider when determining if an individual may be an unpaid intern include:

What’s the Most Ignored Task That Almost Guarantees Your Business to Fail?
By Tom Bone, Risk Insurance Advisor with ISU Insurance Services

All too frequently, we learn how Mother Nature and man-made events affect businesses, employees, and families. Weather, earthquakes, fires, and other events damage property and cause injuries, interrupting business operations.

We all know the keys to running a successful organization: make the right plans, execute them, measure progress along the way, and make those all-important adjustments to achieve the outcomes we are striving for.

So why do business leaders talk about creating an action plan to address their needs when disaster* strikes…but make it such a low priority that they fail to follow through?

All formal and informal surveys about disasters tell us the survival rate of affected businesses is dismal. According to a report from FEMA, “forty percent of businesses do not reopen...and another 25 percent fail within one year.”

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   This ezine is intended as a communication and thought provoking tool for our clients and friends. It is not legal advice.  

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