In a workforce composed of both independent contractors and employees (exempt and non-exempt alike), it is crucial for companies to ensure each person’s work status is classified appropriately under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and relevant state laws, and to understand the financial and business consequences of misclassification. With our sector-specific experience and approach, we bring both a commercial and technical acumen to proactive strategic planning to avoid liabilities, and a SWAT team-like approach to litigation.
Our full-service approach includes assessing your exposure and conducting regular policy reviews for compliance with laws concerning classification, overtime, non-discretionary bonus regular rate recalculations, meal and rest periods, off-the-clock work, recordkeeping and payroll deductions, among other issues. If your current practices require change, we partner with you to assess the risks associated with those changes and develop a plan to reduce exposure, effectively roll out new policies, and deliver tailored trainings to educate and improve manager and employee compliance.
Regarding classification of exempt and non-exempt employees, employees versus independent contractors, and business-to-business contracts potentially raising joint employer issues, our team digs into these complexities every day with clients to properly characterize these business relationships and capture and treat them appropriately in agreements, policies and practices.
For companies relying on gig workers who face the complicated task of classifying independent contractors, our team can advise on a wide variety of related issues. We provide uniquely insightful counsel on the Dynamex-adopted “ABC” test for determining independent contractor status for employers in California, as one of our team members was directly involved in the case that formulated the original decision.
For companies in the entertainment and sports industry contracting with loan-outs and navigating related classification and tax issues, our multi-disciplinary team of industry experts can advise on and defend these relationships. We protect loan-outs on the front end by ensuring they adhere to corporate formalities so they are not invalidated, leveraging the right labor, tax and corporate laws to build the strongest agreements possible for you.
If your organization ultimately becomes the focus of government investigations and compliance audits, we are dedicated and decisive in taking action to defend you, providing effective and battle-tested plans to minimize the investigation’s scope, evaluate your position and create a response.
In the courtroom, we are experienced and skilled defenders of high-stakes wage-hour litigation. Our team has a deep understanding of the issues in cases that challenge your business model or industry practices. Having handled hundreds of wage-hour cases and class actions successfully, we use those insights to develop strategies to shut cases down early and cost effectively, or bring you a win, depending on your goals.