Split 9th Circ. Unravels Calif. Truckers' AB 5 Injunction

By Linda Chiem (April 28, 2021, 5:59 PM EDT) -- A split Ninth Circuit panel said Wednesday that federal law doesn't trump California's heightened standard for legally classifying workers as independent contractors, dealing a blow to commercial truckers who claimed the Golden State law would wreak havoc on operational and hiring practices.

In a 2-1 decision, the Ninth Circuit reversed U.S. District Judge Roger T. Benitez's January 2020 preliminary injunction barring California from enforcing A.B. 5 against motor carriers and owner-operators in the trucking industry.

Judge Benitez, who initially issued a temporary restraining order on Dec. 31, 2019, found last year that the requirements of the so-called ABC test — the...

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