POWER OF BLOGS

Insight Center: Blogs

Black-Car Drivers in New York City Held Independent Contractors By Federal Court of Appeals

Author: Richard J. Reibstein

4/13/2017
Black-Car Drivers in New York City Held Independent Contractors By Federal Court of Appeals

While Uber has dominated the headlines when it comes to whether drivers on their on-demand, ride-sharing platforms are independent contractors or employees, similar battles are being waged elsewhere in the car service industry. One such battle that has received considerable attention involves a class and collective action lawsuit brought under federal and state law against a traditional car service company and drivers who have chosen to invest in and become franchisees of that business. Few independent contractor misclassification cases will have stronger facts demonstrating IC status than this case, so it was hardly surprising that the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit affirmed the district court’s grant of summary judgment in favor of the car service company. What was somewhat surprising is that the U.S. Department of Labor filed a “friend of the court” brief arguing that the district court had erred, where there are so many cases currently pending in the courts with strong facts indicating that workers have been misclassified as ICs.

In this blog post, we review the court decision, provide an analysis and insights, and offer five takeaways.