Wednesday, March 30, 2011

March 30, 2011 Issue - State Legislation Update

See below for the March 30, 2011 Issue - State Legislation Update.
Hank Seaton


OTHER STATE LEGISLATION

Arkansas House Bill 1324 & 1325
Sponsored by Representative Jim Nickels (D – Majority)
This legislation states that an individual in the commercial or residential building construction industry is considered an independent contractor if (1) the individual has a written contract, (2) the individual is free from direction and control, and (3) the individual is engaged in an independently established business. To be considered engaged in an independently established business, the individual must (1) possess the essential tools and equipment, (2) realize a profit or suffer a loss, (3) have proprietary interest, and (4) maintains a business location separate from the location of the person for whom the services are being performed. Status: On February 7, the bill was introduced and referred to the House Committee on Public Health, Welfare, and Labor.
Arkansas House Bill 1839
Sponsored by Representative Jim Nickels (D – Majority)
This legislation authorizes interagency agreements to address worker misclassification. The Department of Workforce Services, the Arkansas Workers' Compensation Commission, and the Department of Labor shall enter into an interagency agreement for the purpose of providing assistance and cooperation in the administration and enforcement of state laws related to the misclassification of employees as independent contractors. The inter-agency agreement under this subchapter shall: (1) provide for the sharing of information to the extent not otherwise prohibited by state or federal law; (2) establish procedures and protocols for the sharing of information to the extent not otherwise prohibited by state or federal law; and (3) provide other assistance or cooperation among the three agencies. Status: On March 3, the bill was introduced and referred to the House Committee on Public Health, Welfare, and Labor. On March 15, the bill was reported favorably out of committee. On March 16, the bill passed the full House and was sent to the Senate Committee on Public Health, Welfare, and Labor.
Arkansas House Bill 2133
Sponsored by Representative David “Bubba” Powers (D – Majority)
This legislation aims to define the relationship of an independent contractor with a trucking company so he or she may have a lease agreement and ensure that the independent contractor has access to workers’ compensation coverage. Status: On March 7, this bill was introduced and referred to the House Committee on Public Health, Welfare, and Labor.
California Senate Bill 316
Sponsored by Senator Bill Emmerson (R – Minority)
The legislation provides meal and rest period requirements for employees. Unless waived by mutual consent of both the employer and employee, a 30 minute rest period is required once the employee has worked a specific amount of hours. Under this legislation, employees employed in the “transportation industry” are exempt from the meal and rest period requirement. Transportation industry is defined as any industry, business, or establishment operated for the purpose of conveying persons or property from one place to another whether by rail, highway, air, or water, and all operations and services in connection therewith; and also includes storing or warehousing of goods or property, and the repairing, parking, rental, maintenance, or cleaning of vehicles. Status: On February 15, the bill was introduced and is currently waiting committee assignment.

Connecticut Senate Bill 678
Sponsored by Senator Anthony Musto (D – Majority)
This legislation aims to provide more clarity by amending the definition of an independent contractor to exclude any individual that is paid hourly, whose tools are provided by the person paying the worker, or who otherwise acts at the specific direction of the payor. Status: On January 24, the bill was introduced and referred to the Joint Committee on Labor and Public Employees.
Florida House Bill 311
Sponsored by Representative Ken Roberson (R – Majority)
This legislation provides a definition for an independent contractor for local business tax purposes. In this proposed legislation, an independent contractor must meet at least four of the following criteria: (1) maintains a separate business, (2) holds or has applied for a federal employer identification number (unless the individual is a sole proprietor), (3) receives compensation for services rendered and such compensation is paid to a business rather than an individual, (4) holds at least one bank account in the same of the business entity, (5) is able to perform work for any entity, or (6) receives compensation for services rendered on a competitive bid basis or completion of a task as defined by a contractual agreement. If four of the criteria are no met, an individual may still be presumed to be an independent contractor if the following are met: (1) The independent contractor controls the means of performing the services, (2) the independent contractor incurs the principal expenses, (3) the independent contractor is responsible for the satisfactory completion of the work, (4) the independent contractor receives compensation for work performed, (5) the independent contractor may realize a profit or suffer a loss, (6) the independent contractor has continuing business liabilities, and (7) the success or failure of the independent contractor’s business depends on the relationship of business receipts to expenditures. Status: On February 1, the bill was referred to the House Economic Affairs Committee and Finance & Tax Committee. On March 8, the bill was referred to the Business and Consumer Affairs Subcommittee. As of March 15, the bill is in the House Committee on Finance and Tax.

Florida Senate Bill 582
Sponsored by Senator Nancy Detert (R – Majority)
This legislation provides a definition for an independent contractor for local business tax purposes. In this proposed legislation, an independent contractor must meet at least four of the following criteria: (1) maintains a separate business, (2) holds or has applied for a federal employer identification number (unless the individual is a sole proprietor), (3) receives compensation for services rendered and such compensation is paid to a business rather than an individual, (4) holds at least one bank account in the same of the business entity, (5) is able to perform work for any entity, or (6) receives compensation for services rendered on a competitive bid basis or completion of a task as defined by a contractual agreement. If four of the criteria are no met, an individual may still be presumed to be an independent contractor if the following are met: (1) The independent contractor controls the means of performing the services, (2) the independent contractor incurs the principal expenses, (3) the independent contractor is responsible for the satisfactory completion of the work, (4) the independent contractor receives compensation for work performed, (5) the independent contractor may realize a profit or suffer a loss, (6) the independent contractor has continuing business liabilities, and (7) the success or failure of the independent contractor’s business depends on the relationship of business receipts to expenditures. Status: On January 25, the bill was filed in the Senate.

Kansas House Bill 2131
Sponsored by House Committee on Commerce and Economic Development
This legislation states that an individual performing services for a contractor is deemed to be an employee of the contractor unless it is shown that the: (1) individual has been and will continue to be free from direction and control, (2) service performed by the individual is outside the usual course of services performed by the contractor, and (3) individual is engaged in an independently established business or is deemed a legitimate sole proprietor. Status: On February 3, the bill was introduced and referred to the House Committee on Commerce and Economic Development.

Kansas Senate Bill 157
Sponsored by Senate Committee on Commerce
This legislation states that no person shall knowingly and intentionally misclassify an employee as an independent contractor. If a court determines that an employer misclassifies a worker, the state may impose penalties of $50 per day for each misclassified worker up to a maximum amount of $50,000. Status: On February 10, the bill was introduced and referred to the Senate Committee on Commerce.
Illinois Senate Bill 1851
Sponsored by Senator Gary Forby (D – Majority)
This legislation amends the Employee Classification Act to provide that the term “employment” does not include services performed by an individual as an operator of a truck, truck-tractor, or tractor if the person or entity is registered or licensed as a motor carrier, operates the equipment under an owner-operator lease contract, and the ability to set their own hours and work for additional companies. Status: On February 9, the bill was introduced and referred to Assignments. On March 2, it was assigned to the Senate Committee on Labor. On March 18, the bill was re-referred to Assignments.
Indiana Senate Bill 164
Sponsored by Senator Frank Mrvan, Jr. (D – Minority)
This legislation states that an employee who intentionally makes false statements to the Department of State Revenue concerning independent contractor status commits a Class D felony. An employer shall not classify an employee as an independent contractor for the sole purpose of avoiding the workers’ compensation and unemployment compensation laws. Status: On January 5, the bill was introduced and referred to the Senate Committee on Pensions and Labor.
Iowa House Bill 216
Sponsored by Representative Bruce Hunter (D – Minority)
This legislation requires employers to provide their employees with the appropriate meal and rest periods. For employees working at least seven hours, the meal period should be taken between the second and fifth hours, and the rest period should be taken during every consecutive four hour period of work. Status: On February 8, the bill was introduced and referred to the House Committee on Labor.
Iowa House Bill 551
Sponsored by Representative Bruce Hunter (D – Minority)
This legislation increases penalties for employers willfully misclassifying employees for unemployment compensation. Status: On March 7, this bill was introduced and referred to the House Committee on Labor.
Maine Senate Bill 332
Sponsored by Senator Douglas Thomas (R – Majority)
This legislation establishes a set of factors to determine whether an individual engaged in the courier business is an employee or an independent contractor for purposes of the workers' compensation laws. To be considered an independent contractor, the individual must be the following factors: (1) owns the motor vehicle or holds it under a lease agreement; (2) is responsible for the maintenance of the motor vehicle; (3) is responsible for substantially all of the operating expenses of the motor vehicle; (4) is responsible for paying the operator’s personal expenses; (5) is responsible for supplying the necessary services to operate the motor vehicle; (6) is compensated based on the factors directly related to the work performed; (7) substantially controls the means and manner of performing the services related to the business; and (8) enters into a written contract. Status: On March 15, this bill was introduced and referred to the Senate Committee on Labor, Commerce, Research and Economic Development.

Maryland House Bill 589
Sponsored by Delegate Dereck Davis (D – Majority)
This legislation states that work performed by a messenger service driver is not considered covered employment if the following are satisfied: (1) the driver and the person engaged in the messenger service business have entered into a written agreement, (2) the driver personally provides the vehicle, (3) compensation is by commission only, (4) the driver may set personal work hours, and (5) the written agreement states prominently that the driver knows their state and federal tax responsibilities and that they are not an employee. The legislation also authorizes messenger service drivers whose work is not covered employment may deliver mail, supplies, records, parcels or other objects on foot, by bicycle, or by motor vehicle. Status: On February 9, the bill was introduced and referred to the House Committee on Economic Matters.
Maryland Senate Bill 685
Sponsored by Senator John Astle (D – Majority)
This legislation states that work performed by a messenger service driver is not considered covered employment if the following are satisfied: (1) the driver and the person engaged in the messenger service business have entered into a written agreement, (2) the driver personally provides the vehicle, (3) compensation is by commission only, (4) the driver may set personal work hours, and (5) the written agreement states prominently that the driver knows their state and federal tax responsibilities and that they are not an employee. The legislation also authorizes messenger service drivers whose work is not covered employment may deliver mail, supplies, records, parcels or other objects on foot, by bicycle, or by motor vehicle. Status: On February 4, the bill was introduced and referred to the Senate Committee on Finance. A public hearing was held on February 22.
Massachusetts Senate Docket Number 1790
Sponsored by Senator Michael Rodrigues (D – Majority)
This legislation is aimed at stimulating the economy and increasing job growth in Massachusetts. One provision, section 20, provides a positive technical correction to the Massachusetts Independent Contractor Law. The legislation also contains a package of incentives to help kick-start job creation. On February 4, the bill was not yet assigned a bill number.
Massachusetts House Bill 3091
Sponsored by Representative Joseph Wagner (D – Majority)
This legislation relates to independent contractors in the trucking and courier industries. An individual is considered an independent contractor if the following factors are met: (1) the individual owns the equipment or holds it under a bona fide lease arrangement; (2) the individual is responsible for the maintenance of the equipment; (3) the individual is responsible for the operating costs, including fuel, repairs, supplies, vehicle insurance, and personal expenses. The individual may be paid the carrier's fuel surcharge and incidental costs, including, but not limited to, tolls, permits, and lumper fees; (4) the individual is responsible for supplying the necessary personal services to operate the equipment; (5) the individual's compensation is based on factors related to the work performed, such as a percentage of any schedule of rates, and not on the basis of the hours or time expended; (6) the individual substantially controls the means and manner of performing the services, in conformance with regulatory requirements and specifications of the shipper; and (7) the individual enters into a written contract that specifies the relationship to be that of an independent contractor and not that of an employee. Status: On March 1, the bill was introduced and referred to the Joint Committee on Transportation.
Massachusetts Senate Bill 957
Sponsored by Senator Michael Rodrigues (D – Majority)
This legislation provides a technical correction to the Massachusetts Independent Contractor Law. An individual is considered an independent contractor if: (1) the individual is free from direction and control, and (2) the service is performed outside the usual course of the business of the employer, or (3) the individual is customarily engaged in an independently established business of the same nature as that involved in the service performed. Status: On January 24, the bill was introduced and referred to the Joint Committee on Labor and Workforce Development.

Nevada Senate Bill 147
Sponsored by Senate Committee on Commerce, Labor, and Energy
This legislation establishes civil liability for knowingly advising an individual to misrepresent the classification of employees for the purposes of industrial insurance. The penalties can range from $5,000 for the first occurrence to $25,000 for the third occurrence. Status: On February 14, the bill was introduced and referred to the Senate Committee on Commerce, Labor, and Energy. A public hearing is scheduled for March 30.
Nevada Senate Bill 148
Sponsored by Senate Committee on Commerce, Labor, and Energy
This legislation creates a private right of action for employees who are misclassified as independent contractors. An employer who improperly classifies an employee as an independent contractor is liable in a civil action commenced by the employee for an amount three times the total amount of actual damages and attorney’s fees. Status: On February 14, the bill was introduced and referred to the Senate Committee on Commerce, Labor, and Energy. A public hearing is scheduled for March 30.
Nevada Senate Bill 207
Sponsored by Senate Committee on Commerce, Labor, and Energy
This legislation gives the Labor Commissioner authority to impose an administrative penalty against an employer who, regardless of the employer’s intent, misclassifies an employee as an independent contractor. The bill defines an individual as an independent contractor if: (1) the person performs services for wages on behalf of an employer; (2) the person has been and will continue to be free from control or direction by the employer over the performance of the services, both under a contract of service and in fact; (3) the service is either outside the usual course of the employer’s business or the service is performed outside of all the places of business of the employer for whom the service is performed; and (4) the service is performed in the course of an independently established trade, occupation, profession or business in which the person is customarily engaged and which is of the same nature as that involved in the contract of service. Status: On March 1, the bill was introduced and referred to the Senate Committee on Commerce, Labor, and Energy. A public hearing is scheduled for March 30.
Nevada Senate Bill 208
Sponsored by Senate Committee on Commerce, Labor, and Energy
This legislation defines "independent contractor" as a person who performs services for an employer if: 1) the person has been and will continue to be free from control or direction by the employer over the performance of the services, both under a contract of service and in fact; 2) the services are outside the usual course of the employer’s business or the services are performed outside of all the places of business of the employer for which the services are performed; and 3)the services are performed in the course of an independently established trade, occupation, profession or business in which the person is customarily engaged and which is of the same nature as that involved in the contract of service.  It requires directed state agencies to share amongst their respective offices information relating to suspected employee misclassification that is received in the performance of their official duties. Finally, the legislation creates a task force on employee misclassification. Status: On March 1, the bill was introduced and referred to the Senate Committee on Commerce, Labor, and Energy. A public hearing is scheduled for March 30.
Nevada Senate Bill 242
Sponsored by Senate Committee on Commerce, Labor, and Energy
This legislation states that an independent contractor is an individual who: (1) has been and will continue to be free from direction and control; (2) performs the service outside the usual course of the business for which the service is performed; and (3) performs the service in the course of an independently established business in which the person is customarily engaged and which is of the same nature as that involved in the contract of service. Status: On March 17, this bill was introduced and referred to the Senate Committee on Commerce, Labor and Energy. A public hearing is scheduled for March 30.

New Hampshire Legislative Service Request 1077
Sponsored by Senator Tom De Blois (R – Majority)
This bill relates to the registration of independent contractors under Workers’ Compensation. The bill has been filed with the Office of Legislative Services but the bill has not been officially introduced.

New York Assembly Bill 1073
Sponsored by Assemblyman Felix Ortiz
This legislation defines an independent contractor as an individual who: (1) performs services free from direction and control over the means and manner of providing the services, (2) furnishes the tools and equipment necessary to provide the service, (3) operates a business that is considered inseparable from the individual for purposes of taxes, profits, and liabilities, in which the individual owns all of the assets and profits of the business; and has sole, unlimited, personal liability for all of the debts and liabilities of the of the business, (4) exercises complete control over the management and operations of the business, and (5) exercises the right and opportunity on a continuing basis to perform the services of the business for multiple entities at the individual's sole choice and discretion. It provides that an individual who has not been properly classified as an employee may bring civil action for damages against the employer for any violation under this Act. Status: On January 5, the bill was introduced and referred to the Assembly Committee on Labor.

New Hampshire House Bill 420
Sponsored by Representative William Infantine (R – Majority)
This legislation requires the Commissioner of Labor to establish a voluntary registration procedure for independent contractors under the workers compensation law. The registration form will include explanations of the consequences and possible penalties of misrepresenting their employment status. An independent contractor who registers will not be eligible for benefits if they incur an injury or illness. Status: On January 21, the bill was introduced and referred to the House Committee on Labor, Industrial, and Rehabilitative Services. A public hearing was held on March 1.

New York Assembly Bill 2274
Sponsored by Assemblyman Bob Reilly (D – Majority)
This legislation amends the workers compensation law by stating that an independent contractor cannot be classified as an employee during orientation or initial training. Status: On January 14, the bill was introduced and referred to the Assembly Committee on Labor.
New York Senate Bill 21
Sponsored by Senator Daniel Squadron (D – Minority)
This legislation defines an independent contractor as a sole proprietor who is not an employee and who is retained by a client for an amount equal to or greater than $600. It states that an independent contractor shall be paid the compensation earned in accordance with the agreed work terms no later than the last day of the month following the month in which the compensation was earned.  It provides recourse for independent contractors seeking to file a complaint regarding a violation of this measure and recover back compensation. Status: On January 5, the bill was introduced and referred to the Senate Committee on Labor.
New York Senate Bill 630
Sponsored by Senator Daniel Squadron (D – Minority)
This legislation pertains to the payment of independent contractors. The independent contractor shall be paid the compensation earned in accordance with agreed work terms. The agreed work terms shall be reduced in writing, signed by both the client and the independent contractor, and made available to the Commissioner upon request. The writing shall include a description of how compensation earned and payable shall be calculated. A client who is found by the Commissioner to be in violation will be subjected to various civil penalties.
Status: On January 5, the bill was introduced and referred to the Senate Committee on Labor.
Ohio House Bill 137
Sponsored by Representative Debbie Phillips (D – Minority)
This legislation aims to create a uniform definition of “employee” in the Ohio Revised Code. An employer is prohibited from designating an individual as an independent contractor unless certain criteria are satisfied. The bill also requires various state departments to share information concerning suspected worker misclassification. Status: On March 2, the bill was introduced and referred to the House Committee on Commerce and Labor.
Ohio Senate Bill 107
Sponsored by Senator Michael Skindell (D – Minority)
This legislation aims to create a uniform definition of “employee” in the Ohio Revised Code. An employer is prohibited from designating an individual as an independent contractor unless certain criteria are satisfied. The bill also requires various state departments to share information concerning suspected worker misclassification. Status: On March 2, the bill was introduced and referred to the Senate Committee on Insurance, Commerce, and Labor.
Oregon House Bill 2313
Sponsored by Representative Chris Harker (D – Even Party Split)
This legislation instructs the Bureau of Labor and Industries to study the development of an independent contractor definition for purposes of adopting by rule a determination of independent contractor status. Status: On January 21, the bill was introduced and referred to the House Committee on Business and Labor.
Oregon House Bill 2469
This legislation establishes a review processes for the Departments of Revenue and Employment based on finding that workers are employees and not independent contractors. The legislation requires the Interagency Compliance Network to work together to share information and increase compliance efforts. Several of the agencies within this network include the Departments of Revenue and Employment, as well as the Bureau of Labor and Industries. Status: On January 21, the bill was introduced and referred to the House Committee on Business and Labor.

Rhode Island Senate Bill 416
Sponsored by Senator Michael McCaffrey (D – Majority)
This legislation aims to address the issue of whether a worker is an employee or independent contractor. In addition to any other relief to which the state or an aggrieved party may be entitled for such worker misclassification, the employer shall be liable: (1) to the aggrieved party for liquidated damages in an amount equal to two times the amount of state and federal payroll taxes, employment security contributions, and workers' compensation premiums for which the employer would have been liable if the employee was properly classified; and (2) to the department for a civil penalty in the amount of up to five hundred dollars for each misclassified employee for a first offense and up to one thousand dollars for any subsequent offense. Status: On March 10, the bill was introduced and referred to the Senate Committee on Labor.

Texas House Bill 1358
Sponsored by Representative Charlie Howard (R – Majority)
For the purposes of the franchise tax, this legislation excludes certain flow through funds (for example, subcontracting payments made by the taxable entity to nonemployee delivery service agents) by qualified courier and logistics companies. A qualified courier and logistics company is defined as a registered motor carrier and taxable entity that receives at least 80 percent of its total revenue from two of the following: (1) expedited same day delivery, (2) temporary storage and delivery, and (3) brokeraged same day and logistics services. Status: On February 15, the bill was filed. On March 1, the bill was referred to the House Committee on Ways and Means.
Vermont House Bill 247
Sponsored by Representative Heidi Scheuermann (R – Minority)
This legislation establishes a common definition of an independent contractor for the purposes of workers’ compensation and unemployment compensation. An individual is considered an independent contractor is the following conditions can be met: (1) maintains a separate business with a separate office, equipment, materials, or other facilities and has continuing recurring business liabilities or obligations; (2) holds or has applied for a federal employer identification number with the internal revenue service or has filed business or self-employment income tax returns with the federal internal revenue service based on that work or service in the previous year; (3) operates under a written contract that specifies a number of items; and (4) voluntarily elected the status of independent contractor. Status: On February 15, the bill was introduced and referred to the House Committee on Commerce and Economic Development.
Vermont House Bill 425
Sponsored by Representative Lucy Leriche (D – Majority)
This legislation states that an individual is considered an independent contractor if the following conditions are met: (1) maintains a separate business and has continuing recurring business liabilities; (2) holds or has applied for a federal employer identification number with the IRS or has filed business or self-employment income tax returns with the IRS; and (3) operates under a written contract. Status: On March 8, this bill was introduced and referred to the House Committee on Commerce and Economic Development.
Virginia Senate Joint Resolution 345
Sponsored by Senator Phillip Puckett (D – Majority)
This legislation instructs the Department of Labor and Industry to study the misclassification of employees as independent contractors. The study will review the status of employee misclassification and the consequences to the workforce, determine the amount of lost revenue to the state government, and determine strategies for improving improper classification of employees. Status: In late January and early February, the joint resolution moved through the Senate with no opposition. In mid-February, the joint resolution was reported favorably by the House Committee on Rules with an 11-0 vote. In late February, the joint resolution was agreed to by the House with a 93-3 vote.
Washington State House Bill 1701
Sponsored by Representative Timm Ormsby (D – Majority)
This legislation pertains to the misclassification of independent contractors in the construction industry. An independent contractor is found to be in violation if he/she engages three or more subcontractors to all work on the same task at a single job site. An independent contractor has the burden of proof to show that all subcontractors are not working on the same tasks at a single job site. Status: On January 31, the bill was introduced and referred to the House Committee on Labor and Workforce Development. On February 16, a public hearing was held and the bill was reported favorably out of the committee. The bill was then moved to the House Rules Committee. In early March, the full House passed the bill by a 54-43 vote and it was sent to the Senate Committee on Labor, Commerce, and Consumer Protection. On March 18, the bill was reported favorable out of the committee and passed to the Rules Committee for second reading.

Washington State Senate Bill 5599
Sponsored by Senator Jeanne Kohl-Welles (D – Majority)
This legislation pertains to the misclassification of independent contractors in the construction industry. An independent contractor is found to be in violation if he/she engages three or more subcontractors to all work on the same task at a single job site. An independent contractor has the burden of proof to show that all subcontractors are not working on the same tasks at a single job site. Status: On January 31, the bill was introduced and referred to the Senate Committee on Labor, Commerce, and Consumer Protection. On February 21, a public hearing was held and the bill was reported favorably out of committee. The bill was then moved to the Senate Rules Committee.

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This update is courtesy of Messenger Courier Association of America (MCAA)

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Worker’s Compensation – Model Act Approved/Important Caveats

The National Conference of Insurance Legislators (NCOIL) recently finalized their Trucking and Courier Industries Worker’s Compensation Model Act.  The final model legislation provides six criteria for determining independent contractor status as well as outlines penalties and enforcement. It will now be sent to state legislators, regulators, and Governors as official NCOIL policy.

NCOIL consists of state legislators who work on insurance issues from across the country. These legislators share information and debate ideas which are then taken back to their home state legislatures. The NCOIL Workers’ Compensation Insurance Committee has been working on the Trucking and Messenger Courier Industries Workers’ Compensation Model Act for over the last year.

As you can see on the attachment, NCOIL’s final Trucking and Messenger Courier Industries Workers’ Compensation Model Act is not perfect but is far better than what is currently in place in a lot of states. Organizations such as FedEx, MCAA and the American Trucking Association have been working closely with NCOIL to educate the policymakers on the importance of the independent contractor business model.

There is an important problem with the legislation which appears in Section 3(1).  This provision would eliminate a safe harbor for any owner-operator who holds a bona fide lease to the equipment pursuant to “any lease arrangement, loan or loan guarantee with the hiring entity or any affiliate of the hiring entity.”  This language appears to exclude from independent contractor status individuals who lease older equipment from a carrier under typical lease-to-own agreements or from carrier affiliates.  It also would appear to call into question loan guarantees by the carrier to leasing companies to facilitate the purchase by the independent contractor of used equipment.

Obviously, clients who have built a business model on helping independent contractors acquire equipment should beware to ensure that this otherwise helpful legislation is not enacted in any state without redaction of this language.

Henry E. Seaton, Esq.



WC Model Act