With the National Association of Mortgage Field Services (NAMFS) Regime meeting at the NAMFS Regime Fraud Fest 2014, the true colors are showing through. As many learned yesterday, the NAMFS Regime broke its own By Laws in the appointment of Joe Hummel to the NAMFS Regime Board. Not surprisingly, neither Hummel nor Keystone Property Services, had any comment. Odd, really, for a guy whom purported to want change within both an Industry and Regime plagued by fraud and corruption. Or, sounds more and more like there was far more to those listed in the email I got from FH Areny last week — remind me to write about the Keystone Property Services connections someday.
[…] the case began when two cheerleaders with the Oakland Raiders accused the team of forcing them to work hundreds of hours at games and public appearances without pay. In addition, the cheerleaders argue that the team has significant control over their work, suggesting an employment relationship, rather than one between an organization and a contractor.
Any similarities there? Let’s see: You MUST — USE Aspen Grove Solutions for Background Checks or no work on a huge portion of Industry work. You must stream your photos — remember these are photos to which you own the creative rights as they are not syndicated — and work orders via Aspen Grove Solutions to be paid through the new Aspen Grove Solutions deal. You must spend hours and hours of data entry and uploads to archaic servers which are both unprotected and non responsive in some cases. You will experience multiple periods of time during the year when your check is missing, short or flat just isn’t sent.
How about insurance. Did you know that you are not entitled to Obamacare if you are an independent contractor? Yup. That issue was brought up in the FedEx lawsuit wherein all of those independent contractors whom drove the trucks …… finally said fuck this shit and sued. You know what? They won! The next quote is taken directly from Forbes and I consider them to know just a little bit about what the hell is going on,
FedEx is everywhere. But a key component of how it does business has been upended by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, which ruled that 2,300 FedEx Ground drivers were misclassified. For years, FedEx called them—and paid them—as independent contractors. No way, said the court resoundingly, they are employees.
Employees trigger a litany of federal and state tax withholding, fringe benefit, anti-discrimination, health care, pension, worker’s compensation and unemployment insurance obligations. You avoid these entanglements by hiring independent contractors or do you? If they are really independent contractors, sure, but labels aren’t enough.
Disputes are common, and independent contractor vs. employee cases have factual and legal nuances galore. So how clear is the FedEx case? “We hold that plaintiffs are employees as a matter of law under California’s right-to-control test.” As a result, FedEx may owe its workforce of drivers hundreds of millions of dollars.
The worker status issue can come up almost anywhere. Some employers find it surprising that workers who sign contracts as independent contractors can still sue claiming they are employees. Yet the tax law, labor and employment law, discrimination, pension, and workers compensation laws are all clear that a contract doesn’t bind this issue. It’s that important.
How about those good ‘ol Non Compete Clauses? We all remember those, don’t we as I reported upon the fact that Keystone Property Services went a courting on Kim Fatica — or the other way around as some tell it. Fatica was seen down at the NAMFS Regime Fraud Fest which would go to show that SEAS LLC has no bite to their bark. In more ways than one, though. You see, Non Compete Clauses are generally pretty good indicators that Contractors are really employees,
Requiring independent contractors to sign non-competes may contribute to a finding that they were misclassified employees entitled to overtime, according to a decision from the Northern District of Illinois. In Perez v. Super Maid, LLC, No. 11-C-07485 (N.D. Ill. July 14, 2014), the court granted a motion for summary judgment by the U.S. Department of Labor alleging that Super Maid violated the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) by treating its maids as independent contractors. The court entered judgment against the defendants in the amount of $184,505.26 and issued an injunction prohibiting defendants from violating the FLSA in the future.
Courts generally believe that when you designate a specific field — Mortgage Field Services — and call these people independent contractors, they should be able to work in an open market. Time and again, attempting to restrict this has been rejected by multiple jurisdictions. Simply declaring someone an independent contractor doesn’t mean jack shit in the eyes of the law. Take Tyra Bolton, for example,
How can my former independent contractor file for unemployment when our duly signed, attorney-approved agreement clearly states “independent contractor”? When I received a notice from the Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation, I thought it would be resolved quickly once I sent them the signed agreement.
Well, it wasn’t. My next notice included a case number for an audit of the work and compensation history not just for that individual, but for my records on every person I had hired in the three years leading up to that.
Unemployment. Now there is a novel approach. So, with HomeStar Property Solutions fucking everyone from top to bottom; with Altisource hiring known bankrupt parties as Vendors, maybe this approach should be tried as well! I mean what does someone have to loose after they have been back billed out of business and the Company refuses to pay a dime? Shit, if I was broke and the Associate General Counsel of Altisource had promised to make good on my money and went out chasing the town over in Luxembourg — remind me to tell you a story there as it is far from pedestrian as I heard it — what do you have to loose? Combine this with your Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) Complaint which you may easily file here — or write us and we will help you for free — and you may stand a chance of buying your family a Christmas gift with something besides food stamps.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is also stepping up its scrutiny of how companies are classifying their workers. The agency’s Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries contained information about independent contractors for the first time in 2011. In fact, As a partner in the DOL’s employee misclassification initiative, OSHA shares information and conducts coordinated enforcement activities with the WHD and other federal and state agencies. This raises the stakes for companies being audited by any agency involved in the initiative. OSHA has also proposed a rule that would compel companies to submit regular reports regarding workplace injuries, which could call more attention to how companies are classifying their workers.
Q4FY2014 is shaping up to be an interesting quarter. And if you were wondering how the Oakland Cheerleaders fared in their litigation? Yeah, $1.25 Million dollar settlement.