Last month, the United States Department of Labor issued Administrator’s Interpretation No. 2015-1, regarding “The Application of the Fair Labor Standards Act’s ‘Suffer or Permit’ Standard in the Identification of Employees Who Are Misclassified as Independent Contractors.” While the Interpretation does not represent a change in the law, it is certainly an indication that the DOL has established a renewed focus on employers’ use of independent contractors in their business models. And because the Interpretation is clear that the guidance it provides may be used in FMLA, as well as FLSA, cases, the DOL and plaintiffs in misclassification lawsuits may cite to it in a large variety of employment litigation matters in the future.
The Interpretation essentially solidifies the wide-angle lens through which the DOL will review and find the presence of employment relationships. In fact, Administrator Weil stated frankly that “most workers are employees under… Continue Reading