City, county and state governments throughout the United States often enact measures to protect or promote favored business groups. The City of Portland’s efforts to protect the cab companies through ordinances limiting the rates and services of other businesses that transport individuals within the metro area such as airport limos, Uber and Lyft recently received judicial approval from the Ninth Circuit in Speed’s Auto Servs. Group v. City of Portland, 2017 U.S. App Lexis 5551 … Read more
Jan 28, 2016
In a blog post earlier this week we highlighted a recent Oregon Supreme Court decision which held that taxi cab drivers are employees, not independent contractors, of the cab companies they work with. We suggested that this holding implicitly threatened the business models on which companies such as Uber, Lyft and similar enterprises in the emerging “sharing economy” have grown. A recent article in the ABA Journal concerning the recently announced settlement of a California … Read more
Jan 27, 2016
Law often lags behind reality. In Broadway Cab LLC v. Employment Department, the Oregon Supreme Court held that a taxi company’s drivers are “employees” and not “independent contractors”. Consequently, the company is obligated to pay unemployment insurance taxes on wages earned by its drivers in 2008 and 2009.
Broadway Cab argued that its drivers performed services only for the passengers who paid the drivers and not the cab company to which the drivers actually … Read more
Dec 12, 2013
The Risks of Mistakenly Treating “Employees” as Independent Contractors: It Could Harm More than Your Business
Small businesses often prefer to treat workers as independent contractors for any number of reasons: avoiding the bother of calculating and paying employee withholdings; escaping the employer’s required expenses for unemployment insurance, workers’ compensation, and other costs; and, freedom from overtime and other wage and hour regulations. In short, treating employees as “independent contractors” can exert a strong attraction on a small business.
Like many other strong temptations, treating an employee as an independent contractor … Read more
Aug 22, 2013
When trying to answer the question of whether an individual providing services is an employee or an independent contractor, there is no clear answer, even when you have a written agreement that clearly states that the individual is an independent contractor. The Oregon Court of Appeals recently held that where you have such an agreement, the court will still look to see if the actual facts support whether an independent contractor or employment relationship exists. … Read more