New DOL Guidance on Independent Contractors: Multi-Factor Test for Determining Worker Classification

A live 90-minute CLE webinar with interactive Q&A

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

1:00pm-2:30pm EST, 10:00am-11:30am PST

Early Registration Discount Deadline, Friday, October 18, 2019

or call 1-800-926-7926

This CLE webinar will discuss the Department of Labor's new guidance regarding independent contractor classification following the 2017 withdrawal of the DOL's 2015 Administrative Interpretation on independent contractors. Our panelists will discuss the most recent guidance--including the just-released guidance on virtual marketplace companies--and provide valuable insight in its application given the limited direction provided by the DOL.


In June 2017, Labor Secretary Acosta withdrew the DOL's prior guidance on independent contractors. Since then, employers around the country are on shaky ground when determining whether a worker classification should be an employee or independent contractor.

The DOL issued Field Assistance Bulletin (FAB) 2018-4, which serves to provide employers with a view into what factors the DOL now deems essential in determining whether a worker is an "employee" or an "independent contractor." The bulletin also applies these factors to a detailed example featuring healthcare registries, an industry which has been at the forefront of this issue.

The FAB provides specific guidance on how to structure independent contractor relationships in the caregiver registry industry. More generally, it signals the DOL's return to the traditional, multi-factor balancing test to determine independent contractor status, with a primary focus on control of the worker. This standard was recently applied to the virtual marketplace company (VMC) industry, where the DOL advised: "The facts in your letter demonstrate economic independence, rather than economic dependence, in the working relationship between your client and its service providers."

Listen as our distinguished panel discusses what this new guidance means for employers across various industries, as well as best practices for employment counsel when advising clients on classification issues and a discussion of what questions remain unanswered by this FAB.



  1. Overview of the new DOL Field Assistance Bulletin (FAB) guidance regarding independent contractor classification
  2. Analysis of the DOL's application of the "totality of the circumstances" test
  3. Discussion of unanswered questions in light of this new DOL guidance
  4. Best practices for employment counsel handling classification issues


The panel will review these and other relevant topics:

  • What new guidance has the DOL provided concerning classifying independent contractors?
  • What factors will the DOL take into account when determining the "totality of the circumstances?"
  • How does this guidance affect employers when making classification decisions?
  • What questions remain unanswered, and what are the best practices for employment counsel going forward?


Barnett, Anne
Anne Cherry Barnett

Reed Smith

Ms. Barnett focuses her practice on employment matters and she has represented clients of all sizes, including...  |  Read More

Duke, John
John E. Duke

Senior Counsel
Constangy Brooks Smith & Prophete

Mr. Duke advises and represents regional, national and international employers across the spectrum of industries in the...  |  Read More

McDaniel, Chad
Chad Edward McDaniel

Constangy Brooks Smith & Prophete

Mr. McDaniel advises employers with respect to the full range of employment issues, including discrimination claims,...  |  Read More

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