Employee Misclassification: Avoid the Looming Crackdown
Connecticut Attorney General, Richard Blumenthal, recently called for stiffer penalties against employers who misclassify employees as independent contractors. Specifically, Attorney General Blumenthal is seeking a dramatic increase of the current penalty for misclassifying employees of $300 per violation to at least $300 per day for each worker misclassified as an independent contractor. The Connecticut General Assembly is expected to take up Attorney General Blumenthal's proposal during its current session.
Attorney General Blumenthal's call to arms is just the most recent evidence of a looming crackdown on employee misclassification. In July of 2008, the General Assembly created a joint enforcement commission on employee misclassification, which reviews employee misclassification and coordinates civil prosecutions of state and federal laws as a result of employee misclassification. Beginning on February 1, 2010, the commission began reporting to the governor and legislature on employee misclassification including recommendations for legislative and administrative action. The commission is expected to launch its website later this month. The website is designed to educate workers about misclassification and will allow them to file complaints in their names or anonymously.