Misclassifying Arizona employees as independent contractors could prove costly

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From HR.BLR.com, Jodi R. Bohr reports that two Resident Assistants (RAs) at a facility owned by the city of Phoenix were misclassified as independent contractors and should have been treated as employees. Jodi writes:

In determining whether the RAs were independent contractors or employees, the court reviewed the economic realities of the relationship and applied several determinative factors. The court found that based on the totality of the circumstances, the RAs were employees, not independent contractors.

First, the court assessed the degree of the city’s control over the RAs. While the city didn’t exert total control over their work, the list of services in the contract and the additional tasks assigned by managers demonstrated the level of control an employer would typically have over an employee. The RAs didn’t need specific tools or equipment, nor did they need special skills to complete their tasks for the city.

Moreover, there was “a high degree of permanence in the working relationship,” even though the city required the RAs to sign a new contract each year. Smith had worked as an RA for nearly 7 years, and Tate had worked as an RA for more than 3 years.

Read the full story at Misclassifying Arizona employees as independent contractors could prove costly

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