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USA: California Senate passes bill that could force Uber & others to classify workers as employees instead of independent contractors

"California Senate Passes Bill Set to Transform Gig Economy", 11 September 2019

The California Senate passed a bill that could force Uber and other gig economy giants to reclassify their workers as employees. Such a change would secure labor protections for thousands of people across the state and deal a significant blow to companies that built multi-billion dollar businesses on independent contractors.

Under the new law, Assembly Bill 5, people in California could generally only be considered contractors if the work they’re doing is outside the usual course of a company’s business. Companies like Uber and Lyft which rely on armies of drivers to service their customers, would likely fail that test without transforming how they do business. Employees are entitled to a minimum wage and overtime pay, neither of which is a common protection within the gig economy...

...“...your business cannot game the system by misclassifying its workers,” Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez, the Democrat who authored the bill, said in a statement. “As lawmakers, we will not in good conscience allow free-riding businesses to continue to pass their own business costs onto taxpayers and workers. It’s our job to look out for working men and women, not Wall Street and their get-rich-quick IPOs.”...

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