In a previous post regarding the “Gig Economy” I concluded that……….
The fact is that the role of workers in the workplace is changing and the regulations which govern this relationship are way overdue for reexamination. A major overhaul seems to be called for rather than patching up what currently exists. We need to ask whether overtime regulations and employment classifications are even needed in today’s workplace, and if they still are, how can this be simplified so that it is clear what is required.
I suggested that this needs a new perspective. Rules need to be revised to recognize the 21st century workplace. That may already be happening, based on recent NLRB and DOL published decisions/opinions.
A recent (April 2019) DOL Opinion Letter indicates a shift in policy towards greater acceptance of IC status for workers. Such Opinions can be helpful in compliance efforts as general guidance, but they are not the law; the Opinions are strictly applied to the requestor of the Opinion. But they provide a feel for where the law is headed.
A recent NLRB (National Labor Relations Board) decision denying the right of Uber drivers to form a union due to not fitting the definition of “employees” of Uber points towards a similar policy shift.
The regulatory landscape is moving in a direction that is more friendly to employers, at least as far as federal law is concerned. At the same time, new challenges for employers are popping up in their relationship with their “team members”, which includes traditional employees (full and part-time) as well as independent contractors/gig workers.
Fasten your seat belts………..