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News | Dec 06, 2009

An Excellent FLSA “Independent Contractor” Opinion from the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals

Just read a great opinion reversing a district judge’s summary judgment dismissal of an overtime lawsuit in which who repaired telecommunications and cable lines in the wake of the Katrina disaster alleged that they were misclassified as independent contractors. The opinion is entitled Cromwell v. Driftwood Electrical Contractors, Inc., 2009 U.S. App. LEXIS 22389 (5th Cir. Oct. 12, 1009). Applying the “economic realities” test, the Circuit Court emphasized that the cable workers worked full-time and exclusively for the defendant employer and, as such, were economically dependent on the defendant employer and did not have any meaningful opportunity to operate their own businesses.

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