Trucker Not Independent Contractor Despite Contract Language

18 wheeler tankerFrom

There were three parties in this case:

  • Trimac is a multinational corporation that specializes in transporting liquid latex-based products (the Carrier)
  • Ali’s Trucking, (the Trucking Company), was owned by Intaz Ali and owned two tractors that were purchased from the Carrier and leased back to the Carrier. The Trucking Company entered into a contract with the Carrier designating the Trucking Company as an independent contractor.
  • Sheik Zahid Ali is the driver of the truck for the Trucking Company. (the Driver)

The case arose as an appeal from a decision by an arbitrator.  The court said:

The arbitrator did a thorough job of canvassing the evidence and sizing up the situation, faithfully following the analysis prescribed by Borello. [Borello and Sons, Inc. v. DIR (1989) 48 Cal. 3d 341]  That evidence demonstrated substantial, if not pervasive, control by [the Carrier] over not only its own operations but the operations carried out on its behalf by all those who drove for it, whether designated employees or independent contractors.  [The Carrrier] selected [the driver], hired him, trained him, supervised him, monitored his comings and goings, provided his safety equipment, dispatched his jobs, investigated the accident that led to his injury and treated him in almost every respect as one of  its employee drivers.  It, not [the Trucking Company or the Trucking Company’s owner], maintained all records relating to [the Driver’s] work.  It even procured the insurance that purportedly covered him, though not workers’ compensation insurance that should have been obtained for that purpose.  As the evidence showed, it could have fired him had he performed in an unsatisfactory manner.  All of this evidence supported the arbitrator’s determination that [the Driver] was [the Carrier’s] employee for purposes of workers’ compensation.

Read the full story at CompNewsNetwork – Trucker Not Independent Contractor Despite Contract Language

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