NJ Justices To Decide If Insurance Agents Always Contractors

By Bill Wichert (February 16, 2021, 6:00 PM EST) -- The New Jersey Supreme Court will dig into whether insurance agents are categorically independent contractors, exploring a question posed by the Third Circuit involving class claims that Northwestern Mutual misclassified agents as contractors and made unlawful deductions from their commissions.

In an order made available Tuesday, the Supreme Court agreed to take on one of two questions certified by a circuit panel last year in reviewing Fred Walfish's appeal of a New Jersey federal court decision nixing his proposed class action against Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Co. and its subsidiary, Northwestern Mutual Investment Services LLC.

That question deals with whether an...

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