November 27, 2020

Volume X, Number 332

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November 25, 2020

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November 24, 2020

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Ride Share Companies Likely to Appeal California TRO Requiring Them to Treat Drivers as Employees

We have written here frequently about California’s controversial AB 5 law, which permits companies to treat workers as independent contractors only if they satisfy a stringent “ABC” test.

The broad statue, unambiguously written to try to force companies to treat gig economy workers as employees, has been the subject of a great deal of debate and litigation, including a state court action filed by the State Attorney General trying to force ride share companies to treat their drivers as employees.

In the action filed by the State Attorney General, the Superior Court judge has issued a temporary restraining order requiring the ride share companies to treat their drivers as employees.

The Superior Court judge ruled that the companies could not satisfy the “B” part of AB 5’s “ABC” test, which requires that the worker performs work that is outside the usual course of the hiring entity’s business in order to be treated as an independent contractor.

The decision is appealable within 10 days – and there is every reason to believe that the ride share companies in fact will appeal the decision.

How the issue plays out with the Court of Appeal will be closely monitored.  But whatever the Court of Appeal does, there ultimately will be a ballot showdown in November 2020 when California voters will be asked to decide whether ride share and food delivery companies may treat their workers as independent contractors.  Of course, only time will tell whether that initiative will be successful.

©2020 Epstein Becker & Green, P.C. All rights reserved.National Law Review, Volume X, Number 225
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About this Author

Michael S. Kun, epstein becker green, los angeles, labor, employment
Member

Mr. Kun's practice includes:

  • Litigating more than six dozen class actions and collective actions in California, New York, Georgia and Maryland involving a variety of employment issues, including discrimination and wage-hour claims, and successfully defeating motions for class certification on such claims. The sizes of the putative classes have ranged from 75 to approximately 15,000 employees.

  • Litigating a wide variety of employment-related claims, including discrimination, harassment,...

310-557-9501
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