» Illinois Supreme Court Protects Workers, Upholds Constitutionality of Employee Classification Act

Illinois Supreme Court Protects Workers, Upholds Constitutionality of Employee Classification Act

Chicago, IL (Law Firm Newswire) May 7, 2014 – The Illinois Supreme Court has upheld the constitutionality of the state's Employee Classification Act.

The Employee Classification Act protects construction workers from being misclassified as independent contractors rather than employees. In the case, Bartlow v. Costigan, the state high court rejected a constitutional challenge by a roofing company that claimed the law was impermissibly vague and violated due process rights.

“This is an important ruling for workers,” states Robert Briskman, a Chicago work injury attorney. “When employees are misclassified as independent contractors, their employers avoid paying worker's compensation premiums, unemployment insurance and overtime, putting workers at risk.”

The court's February 21 decision upholds one of the strongest worker classification statutes in the country. The law creates a presumption that an individual performing construction services is an employee unless the company can prove otherwise.

As with the laws in many other states, to prove that an individual is an independent contractor, the company must show that the individual is free from control and direction by the company in the manner and means of performing the services; that the service is not in the usual scope of services that the company performs; and that the individual has an independent business or trade.

However, the Illinois law goes a step further, applying the employee presumption not just to individuals, but also to sole proprietorships and partnerships. These are deemed individuals unless an additional 12-factor test is met, showing that the entity is a self-sustaining business. The factors include showing that the entity has made a substantial capital investment and that it serves the general public.

The Illinois Department of Labor said that the misclassification of employees costs the state up to $700 million per year in lost payments and taxes.

Violations of the law subject the employer to penalties. Each day of misclassification for each worker is considered a separate violation. A first offense can bring a penalty of up to $1,000, with willful violations resulting in triple damages and subsequent violations resulting in double damages.

The Department said it has collected $314,325 in penalties resulting from 111 separate investigations since the law went into effect in 2008.

Briskman Briskman & Greenberg
351 West Hubbard Street, Ste 810
Chicago, IL 60654
Phone: 312.222.0010
Facebook: Like Us!
Google+ Contact a Chicago personal injury attorney from Briskman Briskman & Greenberg on Google+.

  • Personal Injury Claim Cites FitBit Data
    Wearable devices that track the movements of users to help them with personal fitness goals can also produce evidence that can be used in personal injury lawsuits. The first known case to use data from the popular FitBit device is now underway. The plaintiff in the personal injury claim was injured four years ago, before ...
  • “A code of silence”: Lawsuit filed over teen’s death at police hands in 2014
    The mother of a teenager who was shot and killed by police on Chicago’s West Side has filed a federal wrongful death lawsuit against the force. Roshad McIntosh was killed in August 2014. At a news conference, his mother, Cynthia Lane, said that police have not revealed the names of the officers who fired the ...
  • Wrongful death lawsuit filed against Chicago-area trucking company
    A surviving relative of a woman and two children who died in a truck crash has filed a wrongful death lawsuit. Marciela Ruiz has filed the suit on behalf of her three late family members, Elizabeth Peralta-Luna and her children (a girl, age 9, and a boy, 4). Ruiz is accusing Monson and Sons Inc., ...
  • Study Finds Distracted Driving Repercussions Underestimated for Teens
    Parents who worry about their teens texting and driving may be more right than they know. A traffic safety foundation analyzed nearly 1,700 videos of teens driving and found that distracted driving was more of a factor in crashes than previously thought. The study, conducted by the University of Iowa and funded by the AAA ...
  • Patient Safety Initiatives Needed to Reduce Medical Malpractice in Pregnancy Treatment and Childbirth
    Medical mistakes cause an astonishing number of deaths and serious injuries every year. According to reliable estimates, medical errors are the third leading cause of death in the United States, behind heart disease and cancer. There are evidence-based protocols that can greatly reduce the number of errors, but many health care providers prefer to expend ...

See other news sources publishing this article. BETA | Tags: , , , , ,



Get headlines from Law Firm Newswire sent right to your inbox.

* indicates required