Thursday, October 18, 2007

Good News For FedEx Workers: They're, you know, real employees.

So sayeth a District Court Judge in Indiana. Here's the deal. FedEx has been clasifying its drivers as 'independent contractors' to get out of paying them overtime, insurance, and workman's comp. Of course these people are actual employees, and a court ruling now says they can sue as a class of folks as opposed to individuals.

This is a nice trick that lots of companies have used over the years, from custodians and janitors, home health care workers, to Microsoft engineers. An Estimated $1.6 billion in payroll taxes is lost by businesses cheating under this system. And of course, like most things, this estimate is based on people's willingness to step up and fight, so these are only the figures we know about. The actual number of employees in this situation is probably much higher.


And here's a nice Q&A from Working America on rights (well, mostly the lack thereof) for independent contractors.

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