AB5 Update

Poster by California owner-operator truckers regarding California's AB5 law restricting who is considered an independent contractor

The fight is over California’s AB5/ABC test versus the IRS test used for over twenty years. Both help determine whether someone should be an independent contractor who charges for their services or an employee who receives wages. I wrote a blog about it a year ago when the fight heated up.

There is legitimate concern that certain industries are taking advantage by classifying people as independent contractors, when they should be employees, just to avoid minimum wage, taxes, health insurance, etc.

Following is a recap written by fellow member of Editorial Freelancers Association, Lila Stromer: “Here’s an article about what is going on with the US Department of Labor (DOL), freelancers being upset with being ignored, and DOL meeting secretly with unions. The big takeaway: ‘adopting the ABC test wouldn’t be possible via rulemaking and could only be accomplished by Congress, according to multiple people who attended.’ If that’s true, then the DOL can’t put it in the 2022 regulation, which begs the question: what’s in the 2022 regulation?

”Independent big-rig truckers protested AB5 this past Wednesday at two of California’s ports. They slowed down traffic on two major California highways.

“These big-rig freelancers can make the noise about AB5/ABC Test that the rest of us freelancers can’t.

“Additionally, if the ABC Test passes at the national level, there’ll be no carveouts allowed according to Biden. That means all the California freelancers who got out from AB5 (about 107 carveouts to date) will be back in the line of fire.”

There have been numerous big-rig truckers walk away from their profession because they simply cannot live on the proposed wages and pay for their own fuel, living expenses, etc. If you think the supply chain is bad now, just wait until there are even fewer truck drivers to transport goods and materials from the ports to various parts of the country. Shortages are already climbing.