Uber Loses Crucial California Court Battle
John Skousen was quoted in on Tech News World on June 18, 2015. The article “Uber Loses Crucial California Court Battle” discussed how yet another authority has ruled that ride-sharing service Uber is too hands-on in its transportation network and acts too much like an employer to avoid paying out benefits like one. Uber already has appealed the decision reached by the California Labor Commission and has asserted that the ruling is "nonbinding," rather than precedent for the Golden State.
It's important to keep in mind that this decision came down from a deputy labor commissioner, who is at the very bottom of a chain of agencies that decide issues such as this, observed John.
"They could get the message that maybe [other people] should pursue this as well, as part of a collective action under the California Private Attorney General Act, which could be filed on behalf of the attorney general," he told the E-Commerce Times.
"All similarly impacted individuals could [bring] suit for expenses not reimbursed, along with a number of other allegations that could be added to this private attorney general action," John explained.
Because the appeal essentially resets the chess board, it's possible this case could evolve into a class action, he suggested, though he emphasized that he is not privy to either side's strategies.
Independent contractors can help to start up a new company or keep established companies growing, but employers must take care, according to John, who noted the increasing difficulty for California employers who want to offer jobs on that basis.
"There's no way you can eliminate the independent contractor as a possible element in a business' undertakings," said John. "So I think employers will just have to be careful that when the words 'independent contractor' come up, they're cautious in looking at all of the potential issues that could come."
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