Reports indicate the number of wage claims filed under the Fair Labor Standards Act is at an all time high. Last year, there were approximately 7000 lawsuits filed under the FLSA. With less than 5 months left in the reporting year, the number of FLSA suits already exceeds the total for last year.
In 2011 SBH employment attorneys counseled employers to expect greater inquiry into whether workers classified as independent contractors actually met the requirements for such a designation. We correctly anticipated increased litigation alleging misclassification of employees as independent contractors (which are exempt from overtime as well as meal and rest breaks). Our predictions were correct and increased litigation is likely to continue. If portions of your workforce are classified as independent contractors, it is time to reevaluate whether the designation is appropriate. Contact me, or another SBH employment attorney, if you have questions about employee/independent contractor designations.