New State Laws for Gig Employees: Classification, Minimum Pay, Sick Leave, Unemployment Benefits, Safety Requirements

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

This program is included with the Strafford CLE Pass. Click for more information.
This program is included with the Strafford All-Access Pass. Click for more information.

Thursday, October 6, 2022 (in 5 days)

1:00pm-2:30pm EDT, 10:00am-11:30am PDT


This CLE course will guide employment counsel, gig businesses, and those businesses relying on gig workers on how to address common legal issues and mitigate risks stemming from the emerging gig economy. This program will examine the gig economy's impact on employers across multiple industries concerning worker classification, state and federal regulations, and exemption issues.

Description

Across the country, several state legislatures have introduced laws to clarify the classification of workers in the gig economy. Ride-hailing and delivery app companies such as Uber Technologies Inc. and DoorDash Inc. are subject to new laws in the Southern U.S. for classifying their drivers as independent contractors—including in Alabama, Florida, and Georgia.

In Alabama and Georgia, new state laws state that drivers for app-based transportation and delivery networks are not employees if the app companies meet specific criteria, such as allowing the drivers to determine the hours they work and which requests to accept. The companies also can't ban drivers from driving for other companies or holding other jobs. While Georgia expanded worker eligibility for unemployment benefits, the state exempted app-based drivers and music industry professionals.

In Florida, a new law allows companies to provide safety equipment and assistance to gig workers during a state of emergency without creating an employer-employee relationship.

Meanwhile, Washington implemented compromise legislation this year that kept ride-hailing drivers classified as independent contractors while granting them certain benefits such as minimum pay per trip and paid sick time. In Massachusetts, in June 2022, the state's high court struck down a proposed ballot initiative that would have asked voters to approve a similar scheme of independent status but with benefits.

Several states, including Rhode Island and Vermont, have proposed legislation that mirrors California's ABC test to assess whether a gig worker is an employee or an independent contractor. With a revived labor movement and the increased lobbying for laws by tech companies, it is unlikely this issue will be resolved soon.

Listen as our authoritative panel provides an overview of where the current state laws on gig workers stand and how the gig economy's classification may impact the rest of the labor force.

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Outline

  1. New state laws on gig worker classification
    1. Classification
    2. Minimum pay
    3. Sick leave
    4. Unemployment benefits
    5. Safety requirements
    6. California ABC test
  2. Overview of states' laws
    1. Alabama
    2. Georgia
    3. Florida
    4. Massachusetts
    5. Washington
    6. Nevada
    7. South Dakota
  3. Future of gig worker classification

Benefits

The panel will address these and other relevant topics:

  • What trends are likely to continue in state legislatures regarding gig worker classification?
  • What other states may adopt the California ABC test?
  • Will state laws that specify app-based drivers are not employees have implications for other workers?

Faculty

Bressman, Caroline
Caroline E. Bressman

Attorney
Nichols Kaster

Ms. Bressman represents thousands of workers in wage and hour collective, class, and hybrid matters arising under...  |  Read More