Some of the troubles discussed in this Newsletter can be fixed by passage of the Employee Misclassification Prevention Act (the “Act”), which was introduced in April 2010 in the United States Senate. The Act currently sits in the Senate’s Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions. Pennsylvania Senator Robert is one of the Act’s co-sponsors.
If passed, the Act will amend the FLSA to require companies to, among other things, keep records of all individuals (regardless of their IC classification) who perform labor or services for the company and notify all individuals of their employment classification and their rights under the law. The Act also contains other important provisions, such as making it unlawful for a company to discharge or otherwise discriminate against any individual who complains about his/her IC classification and doubling the amount of liquidated damages a misclassified IC can recover in court.
Senator Tom Harkin (D-Iowa), who chairs the Senate Committee and supports the Act’s passage, has correctly observed that IC misclassification “cheats workers out of important labor protections, like the right to overtime pay and worker’s compensation, and robs federal and state governments of desperately needed tax revenues.” Chairman Harkin believes the Act will “level the playing field for responsible employers who play by the rules.” Let’s hope he’s right.
Please contact your Senators and Congressperson and tell them that you support the Employee Misclassification Prevention Act!!!