AB-5 Update: Construction Truckers Covered

In the ongoing legal battle surrounding California’s controversial AB-5 decision, which reclassifies truck drivers among other things, regional transportation associations have been looking for some guidance. The state’s Attorney general, trucking companies, independent trucking contractors, and Uber and Lyft are all involved in the matter, as all are trying to find common ground when it comes to classifying employees and obtaining the right benefits and insurance coverage.

But in recent weeks, the Western States Trucking Association, a non-profit trucking association that helps protects the rights of trucking companies, scored a major win against the AB-5 California mandate by forcing the government to renounce the plain language involved in the bill, and instead agree to treat construction trucking like all other motor carriers. While this AB-5 Win may seem small, it’s a step in the right direction for everyone from truckers to the companies they work for in the state.

As a result of this decision, all members of the construction trucking industry, a major player in the state’s economy, are now fully protected by the injunction against the ABC testing, which reclassifies workers.

The Dynamex Decision

In 2018, the Supreme Court of Los Angeles set the foundation for AB-5, which spurred on legislation that reclassified trucking professionals as employees instead of independent contractors. AB-5 codified the Dynamex decision and applied a test to any industry that was not given an exception in the law. Some of the exceptions included wholesale exemptions, meaning they could still use the traditional test.

However, only construction trucking was singled out for an exception that was worse than the ABC test itself. Under the terms of AB-5, construction trucking was called out to mandate an employment relationship between trucking independent contractors. Any time a trucking company sought to subcontract some or all of the construction trucking work on a particular construction trucking job, whether by using independent truckers or other trucking companies, they would be deemed the employers for all trucks working on that job.

The order now targeting WSTA’s complaint highlights that in light of the state’s interpretation of the law, their trucking members have no threat of something hanging over their heads when it comes to prosecution under the challenged provisions. As a result, WSTA members and construction trucking drivers are subject to the ABC test like everyone in the industry and are protected from the enforcement of the test.

About Western Truck Insurance Services

Western Truck Insurance Services is a commercial truck insurance agency with roots dating back to 1954. We have evolved into a highly respected, professionally managed, truck and transportation insurance brokerage. The hallmark of our organization is our desire to provide unparalleled service. We go way beyond what you expect to receive from an insurance brokerage. Equipped with state of the art automation, Western Truck Insurance can provide you with lightning fast truck insurance quotes, customer service, Insurance certificates, and coverage changes. Contact us today at (800) 937-8785 to learn more.