In California, employees are supposed to be properly classified as to their work status. This is to ensure that both the employer and employee have a legal relationship, and the employee is accorded all of the rights he or she is mandated to have. The failure to adhere to this law can lead to violations of the law. For example, the employee may not be receiving health insurance or overtime wages, and and the proper taxes may not be being paid. Failure to classify workers as they should be is an ongoing issue across the country.
Often, this is done by an employer classifying employees as independent contractors even if the law would view them as employees by any other measure. Research has indicated that this happens in a wide range of industries, but it has grown more prevalent with what is known as the “gig” economy. For example, ride-sharing services in which people use their own vehicles to drive people around has led to multiple legal filings as to the misclassification of their job status and failure to provide them with their legal protections and rights.
Other areas in which this occurs include the construction industry, caregivers, and port truckers. Because many of these workers might be in the country illegally or do not understand their rights under the law, they are vulnerable to these abuses. Wage theft and other violations can happen with impunity. Attempting to crack down on this practice can only go so far. Workers need to be fully aware of their rights and when the employer is violating them in any way whether it is by not according the proper breaks, giving sick time or failing to pay wages that the employee was owed.
Those who believe that they have been subjected to legal violations need to know what to do to get what they deserve. Speaking to a legal professional who is experienced in helping clients who have been victimized by employee classification violations can help in determining whether there is a case or not and moving forward in pursuing it.
Source: alternet.org, “Blatant Illegal Job Misclassification Causes Stress and Pain,” Julie Gutman Dickinson, July 29, 2016