E-Blasts

California Voters Side with Uber & Lyft in Classifying Workers

After numerous legal battles challenging California’s new law classifying app-based drivers as employees, Californians have sided with the ride sharing companies. Assembly Bill (“AB”) 5 became effective this year which classified app-based drivers as employees and not independent contractors. Uber, Lyft and other ridesharing companies challenged the new law in court. After grim court decisions, ridesharing companies hoped for Proposition 22 to pass.

 

Prop 22 supersedes AB 5, restoring app-based drivers as independent contractors. A majority of California Voters voted for Prop 22, agreeing with Uber and Lyft that app-based drivers should be classified as independent contractors.

COUNSEL TO MANAGEMENT:

Although the California Legislature has the authority to create laws, Californians can directly effectuate change through Propositions. This is an example of how California voters can change a law passed by the Legislature. If you have any questions regarding this Proposition, please contact the experts at The Saqui Law Group.

Albertsons Settles Wage & Hour Lawsuit for Failure to Pay Reporting Time

American grocery chain Albertsons has agreed to pay $2.5 million to settle a wage and hour lawsuit brought by their delivery drivers. The crux of the driver’s lawsuit was the employer’s failure to pay reporting time to its delivery drivers. The delivery drivers alleged that they were required to perform job-related duties prior to clocking in but were not compensated for this time. The drivers also alleged that they were called into work on numerous occasions but when they arrived, they were told to leave because there were no available deliveries.

The delivery drivers sought $14.3 million in labor code penalties. After a successful mediation session and approval by a California federal court, the employer and employees settled their claim for $2.5 million.

COUNSEL TO MANAGEMENT:

This case serves as a reminder that, under California law, an employer must compensate non-exempt employees for any reporting time penalties. An employer is liable for reporting time pay if they send an employee home before reaching at least half of their scheduled shift. If you have any questions regarding your company’s reporting time policies, contact the experts at The Saqui Law Group.

California Labor Commissioner Will Now Represent Plaintiffs in Arbitration Disputes & Proceedings

Governor Newsom signed Senate Bill (“SB”) 1384 into law which extends the Labor Commissioner’s authority to represent an employee in an arbitration disputes and proceedings. SB 1384 applies when an employee is financially unable to represent themselves in a proceeding where an employer attempts to enforce an arbitration agreement. SB 1384 is effective on January 1, 2021.

SB 1384 allows the Labor Commissioner to represent an employee in disputing the validity of a signed arbitration agreement or represent an employee in an actual arbitration proceeding. As such, beginning in 2021, an employer will likely find themselves in an arbitration proceedings with the California Labor Commissioner.

COUNSEL TO MANAGEMENT:

The Labor Commissioner ramping up its representation of employees in disputes with employers. While it is unclear if the Labor Commissioner will have the manpower to represent all these employees, SB 1384 provides the Labor Commissioner with broader authority to represent an employee in a dispute with their employer. If you have any questions regarding this new law, contact the experts at The Saqui Law Group.

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