Hill, Farrer & Burrill LLP

News & Updates

U.S. Supreme Court Approves Employer-Mandated Arbitration Agreements with Class-Action Waivers

In an important victory for employers, on May 21, 2018 the United States Supreme Court ruled that employers may lawfully require employees to enter into arbitration agreements with class action waivers.  The Court in Epic Systems v. Lewis struck down a series of decisions by the Obama-era National Labor Relations Board that prohibited employers from requiring employees to sign arbitration agreements containing class action waivers.  The NLRB had held that employees taking part in class actions were engaged in “concerted activity” protected by the National Labor Relations Act.  The high court disagreed, holding that the Federal Arbitration Act governed arbitration agreements and required that the agreements be enforced according to their terms. More>>

The California Supreme Court Severely Limits When It Is Appropriate To Classify A Worker As An Independent Contractor

On April 30, 2018, the California Supreme Court issued a landmark decision in the matter of Dynamex Operations W., Inc. v. Superior Court, No. S222732, 2018 WL 1999120 (Cal. Apr. 30, 2018), severely restricting when it is appropriate for an employer to classify a worker as an independent contractor for purposes of the California Wage Orders.

The Court adopted the “ABC” test, utilized in several other jurisdictions, as the appropriate test to determine whether a worker is an employee or an independent contractor.  The “ABC” test clarifies the definition of “employ” (“to engage, suffer, or permit to work”) that is set forth in the California Wage Orders.  More>>