In the midst of ongoing debates surrounding the classification of freelancers and gig workers, Jim Coleman, Constangy partner and Wage and Hour Compliance and Litigation Practice Group Co-Chair, spoke to Law360 on the nuances of each role. 

The finalized federal independent contractor rule aims to provide clarity on worker classification with a six-factor classification test. However, this and similar tests do not fully grasp the nuances of freelance and gig work and tend to lean towards classifying workers as employees, undermining the many reasons workers may opt to remain independent, such as flexibility and freedom. 

"The essence of being self-employed, which is really what a freelancer or an independent contractor is, is being able to make decisions daily and throughout the day, that allow you to maximize your return on investment," Jim says.

The finalized federal independent contractor rule is scheduled to take effect on March 11th barring delay by legal challenges.

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Jim is a seasoned attorney with over 40 years of experience specializing in wage and hour compliance and litigation. He has counseled employers on FLSA and state wage laws, defending them in class actions and administrative proceedings. Jim served as General Counsel for the National Council of Chain Restaurants, advocating for industry interests before Congress. His expertise extends to labor law issues such as child labor restrictions and employment discrimination. As Co-Chair of the firm’s Wage and Hour Practice Group, Jim continues to provide invaluable guidance and representation to clients, particularly in the restaurant and food service industry.


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