Whether you actively follow California employment law news or simply enjoy having an easy way to schedule a ride somewhere, you've probably heard about a recent case involving the online ride-sharing company Uber. On Tuesday, the California Labor Commission ruled on an appeal by an Uber driver who had been seeking reimbursement from the company for job-related expenses. The trouble was, companies only have to reimburse employees -- not independent contractors.
Many individuals know that there is a difference between employees and independent contractors. In many cases, independent contractors do not receive many of the same benefits that full-time employees are entitled to. As a result, employers may misclassify their workers in an attempt to avoid supplying certain benefits. Consequentially, misclassified workers can miss out on wages and other incentives that they should be receiving.
Unpaid internships in California and the rest of the United States have been on the rise among college students and graduates since the country's economy took a nosedive in 2008. Unpaid labor in violation of wage and hour laws set out by the U.S. Department of Labor is often misclassified as an "internship" or a "trainee" position.
It's no secret that people in Fresno, California, are feeling the effects of the weak economy. While individuals and families do what they can to get by, cutting out unnecessary expenses whenever possible, employers and businesses are doing the same thing. In some cases, however, that can lead to violations of California or federal wage and hour laws.