US Department of Labor signs agreement with Idaho Department of Labor
to protect workers from misclassification, help responsible employers
Participants: U.S. Department of Labor, Idaho Department of Labor
Description: Officials from the U.S. Department of Labor and the Idaho Department of Labor have signed a three-year Memorandum of Understanding intended to protect employees' rights by preventing their misclassification as independent contractors or other non-employee statuses. Under the agreement, both agencies may share information and coordinate law enforcement.
Background: The MOU represents a new, combined federal and state effort to work together to protect the employees' rights and level the playing field for responsible employers by reducing the practice of misclassification. Idaho is the latest state agency to join this effort with the U.S. Labor Department. Alabama, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, New Hampshire, New York, Rhode Island, Texas, Utah, Washington, Wisconsin and Wyoming agencies have signed similar agreements.
More information on misclassification and the effort are available at http://www.dol.gov/misclassification/.
Quotes: "Misclassified workers are often denied access to critical benefits and protections such as family and medical leave, overtime, and minimum wage to which they are entitled. Equally important, employers who follow the law cannot compete on a level playing field with employers that violate the law by misclassifying workers."
"Businesses use independent contractors because it often saves them money, but if these same businesses don't follow the rules, it will cost them a whole lot more than they bargained for. That's why we're here. The Idaho Department of Labor can help clarify whether a worker is an employee or an independent contractor. If an Idaho business is considering hiring independent contractors, they should give us a call so we can walk them through the rules and make sure they classify their workers and independent contractors properly."
Kenneth D. Edmunds, Idaho Labor Department Director