» 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+.

  • Illinois jury awards $1 million in birth injury case
    The family of an Illinois girl who was injured during birth was awarded $1 million by a jury in a medical malpractice case. The award came after a six-day trial and five hours of deliberation. Bailei Rae has a brachial plexus injury, which limits the movement of her left arm, as well as permanent nerve [...]
  • How the Illinois Injured Workers’ Benefit Fund works
    Illinois workers who are injured on the job have the right to workers’ compensation benefits for hours of work lost and for medical expenses. If the employer fails to pay the compensation owed, then the benefits can be paid by the Injured Workers’ Benefit Fund (IWBF). The IWBF was created in 2005 to compensate injured [...]
  • Illinois Governor Vetoes Truck Safety Bill
    A bill to increase the speed limit for trucks on some non-urban Illinois highways, which was passed unanimously in both chambers of the Illinois state legislature, has been vetoed by Governor Pat Quinn. The trucking industry supported the bill, claiming that a high speed differential between cars and trucks is dangerous. The top speed for [...]
  • About Erb’s palsy
    Erb’s palsy is an injury that can occur during birth. When such an injury is the result of medical malpractice, the child’s family may be entitled to compensation through a medical malpractice lawsuit. Erb’s palsy has similarities with brachial plexus palsy, which is the loss of upper arm movement caused by nerve damage that occurs [...]
  • Amputee Files Lawsuit Against Hospital for Cremating Amputated Leg
    A patient has filed a lawsuit against Skokie Hospital for incinerating his amputated leg. The patient, an Orthodox Jew whose religious traditions indicate that the dead should be buried whole, claims that he informed a rabbi employed by the hospital and other medical personnel that he wanted his leg to be preserved to be buried [...]

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



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

* indicates required