Misclassification Controversy Continues in California
Recently, stories were published concerning a lawsuit against two port trucking companies for misclassifying employees. Though some may view it as only a technical error, it greatly affected the way some drivers were treated.
Drivers had alleged that they were denied certain pay levels as well as benefits due to this misclassification. Many maintain that it was done on purpose, with the intent of saving money by hiring independent contractors will expecting them to fulfill the duties of full-time employees.
In addition to maintaining they were mistreated in terms of their compensation, many of the drivers in the suit also maintain that their work schedules and other factors were controlled predominantly by the carriers – a condition which usually only applies to full-time employees.
Two carriers have recently applied for an amnesty program in order to pay back wages, benefits and taxes owed to drivers. The program also functions on the condition that carriers are required to properly classify drivers to ensure these types of situations do not continue to occur.
Another California port trucking company was recently found to be guilty of similar misclassification practices. Another constraint put on drivers in this instance was pressure against unionization. Allegations state that truckers were unfairly restrained by their employer from organizing in addition to being improperly labeled as independent contractors.