In the latest development in the FedEx Ground class action suit, lawyers for the plaintiffs attempted to persuade a federal judge to certify as class actions both federal and state-level lawsuits that allege the misclassification of FedEx drivers as independent contractors rather than employees.
However, there is reason to doubt the allegations of misclassification – the FedEx drivers maintain a number of rights unavailable to employees. Recently, Connecticut Workers’ Compensation Commissioner George Waldron found that the drivers were correctly classified as independent contractors for the sake of workers’ compensation. He came to this conclusion by observing a number of those rights reserved by the drivers, including:
- Ownership of the truck and other equipment and the right to use these assets for other purposes;
- Ownership of the routes and the right to purchase additional routes and/or resell their routes;
- The right to hire out (subcontract) the work;
- The right to determine hours independently;
- The right to claim business tax deductions as an independent contractor