Using the ABC Test to Classify Workers: End of the Platform-Based Business Model or Status Quo Ante?

11 William & Mary Business Law Review 733 (2020)

35 Pages Posted: 22 Feb 2020 Last revised: 26 Jun 2020

See all articles by Robert Sprague

Robert Sprague

University of Wyoming - College of Business

Date Written: June 26, 2020

Abstract

In light of California’s recent adoption of the ABC employee/independent contractor classification test, this Article provides a comprehensive analysis of the ABC test’s application in the platform-based (gig) economy. After first reviewing the current state of precarious work arrangements, particularly through gig work, and reviewing more traditional classification tests (the common law control test, the economic realities test, and the IRS test) as well as more recent Market Platform legislation, this Article provides a thorough examination of the factors necessary to satisfy the three parts of the ABC test. Since there are almost no reported decisions applying the ABC test to platform-based (i.e., gig) work arrangements, this Article applies its ABC test analysis to consider possible outcomes in future employee/independent contractor classification determinations for platform-based workers under the ABC test. It is hoped courts will not confuse the precarity of modern working relationships with independence.

Keywords: Independent Contractor, Misclassification, ABC Classification Test

Suggested Citation

Sprague, Robert, Using the ABC Test to Classify Workers: End of the Platform-Based Business Model or Status Quo Ante? (June 26, 2020). 11 William & Mary Business Law Review 733 (2020), Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3526353

Robert Sprague (Contact Author)

University of Wyoming - College of Business ( email )

1000 E. University Avenue
Dept. 3275
Laramie, WY 82071
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.uwyo.edu/mgtmkt/faculty-staff/faculty-pages/sprague.html

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