Employee Misclassification Articles

The Pennsylvania Construction Workplace Misclassification Act Requirements and Tests

If you are a business owner or employer who works with independent contractors in the construction industry, you will want to make sure that you are in compliance with the Pennsylvania Construction Workplace Misclassification Act which goes into effect on February 11, 2011.

To be properly classified as an independent contractor, the construction worker must (1) have a written contract to perform services; (2) be free from the hiring party’s control; and (3) be customarily engaged in an independently established trade, occupation, profession, or business.

The law has not yet established clear guidelines on what constitutes a written contract or the amount of control. It’s still unknown whether a written contract must be separate from a bid or purchase order. These determinations will be up to the Department of Labor who will issue regulations, which will then be interpreted and applied by courts.

In order to meet the third element …

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How The Pennsylvania Construction Workplace Misclassification Act Affects Misclassified Workers

Governor Randell signed the Pennsylvania Construction Workplace Misclassification Act into law, which is about to go into effect February 11, 2011. This act only applies to the misclassification of workers in the construction industry. All other industries would rely on common law tests.

Many contractors misclassify workers as independent contractors rather than employees in order to avoid carrying workers’ compensation and unemployment insurance. For workers who are misclassified as independent contractors, they may be wondering if they can bring a legal action against the employer.

Unfortunately, the Act does not allow private actions. Any violations of the Construction Workplace Misclassification Act could be reported to the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry who would prosecute the case. Penalties includes stiff fines and even jail time. The employer can be liable for up to $1,000 per misclassified employee for the first violation and up to $2,500 per misclassified worker for each …

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