From Fortune and originally published at Time.com, Katy Steinmetz writes about a lawsuit against Instacart, a company that enables customers to order groceries through a smartphone and enables shoppers to receive the orders and then purchase the products and deliver them to the customers. The shoppers use their own vehicles and are classified as independent contractors. Katy writes:
“The growing independent-contractor workforce is a key reason that companies like Instacart and Uber have been able to grow so quickly. In January, Forbes put Instacart at the top of its “America’s Most Promising Companies” list. The cost of organizing independent contractors is much less than hiring employees. The companies who operate this way don’t have to pay unemployment tax or overtime, or ensure that workers are making at least minimum wage. They don’t have to pay for their own fleet of vehicles or costs associated with operating them since the workers use their personal cars. In many cases, they don’t have to pay for the smartphones or data plans workers need to do the jobs….”
By classifying workers as independent contractors, companies like Instacart are not responsible for damages from an accident in which the shopper may have been injured.
Read the full story at Lawsuit: Instacart ‘personal shoppers’ should be employees