Carriers, contractors voice support for keeping DOL rule

From Transport Topics.

Motor carriers and independent contractors in written comments expressed objection to a U.S. Department of Labor proposal to withdraw a rule designed to clarify the federal standard for determining if a truck driver is a contractor or employee.

The agency in January said the rule — issued that month — was designed to promote “certainty for stakeholders, reduce litigation and encourage innovation in the economy.” The proposal to drop the rule drew more than 1,000 comments.

Issued in the waning days of the Trump administration, the federal rule called for elimination of the so-called ABC test used in California to determine whether a truck driver is an employee or independent contractor. The rule was widely viewed as favorable to motor carriers and drew support from groups including American Trucking Associations. Many independent contractors also filed comments to oppose dropping the rule.

Despite this widespread support, there has been speculation that it would not survive a review by the Biden administration. The Labor Department has yet to decide if the rule will remain, but comments on the proposal urge the agency to leave it in place.

“As a sizable commercial motor carrier utilizing both employee drivers and independent contractors, CRST opposes the rescission of the final rule,” wrote Cedar Rapids, Iowa-based carrier CRST The Transportation Solution Inc. “In trucking, the independent contractor/owner-operator model provides hundreds of thousands of drivers the opportunity, autonomy and entrepreneurial empowerment to run their own business and work in ways that suit their individual business/financial goals and lifestyle.”

See the complete article online at Transport Topics.