Hamner Law Offices was formed in 2005. We are a small firm of litigators who concentrate labor class action and consumer rights litigation.
We represent both hourly workers and salaried professionals for claims of unpaid wages and overtime, expense reimbursement and misclassification, piecemeal or flag time violations, severance and layoff issues, and claims for discrimination, harassment or retaliation.
We also represent California consumers in matters involving false advertising, consumer fraud and other unlawful business conduct.
Hamner Law Offices has been named lead or co-lead counsel on many significant labor and consumer class actions. We are proud that our legal work has lead to many noteworthy payouts to aggrieved consumers and workers.
We have offices in Los Angeles, Calabasas, and Palo Alto.
Protecting The Rights of California Drivers and Truckers
Our law firm represents drivers who have been paid per delivery, per mile, or per load or “piece meal” rates, instead the proper way which is hourly, plus overtime. Don’t be fooled by employers who tell you different. If you are not being paid hourly, with overtime, you may be misclassified.
Many delivery drivers are paid a “salary” based on an 8 hour day, but are given 10 to 12 hours worth of delivery work. Under California law, with few exceptions, drivers must be paid for all time worked. If you are not being paid for every hour of driving work you do, please contact us for an immediate and confidential review of your case.
Are You Owed Late or Unpaid Wages or Overtime?
Unfortunately many employers take advantage of their employees when when it is time to pay wages and overtime. The California legislature has enacted strict laws against such conduct by employers. If the employer does not pay its California employees timely, for all worker performed, California has strong laws in place to penalize the employer.
This policy is codified in Labor Code section 203 and related California codes and regulation. Under section 203:
(a) If an employer willfully fails to pay, without abatement… any wages of an employee who is discharged or who quits, the wages of the employee shall continue as a penalty from the due date thereof at the same rate until paid or until an action therefor is commenced; but the wages shall not continue for more than 30 days…
If this has happened to you, please contact us to discuss.
Our Case Against Uber
In 2015 we filed the Del Rio v. Uber action on behalf of Uber driver Ricardo Del Rio, in U.S. District court. Like other cases against Uber throughout the country, we argue in this case that Uber drivers are misclassified. Put another way, like other commercial passenger and deliver drivers in California, Uber drivers are hourly workers, who are fuel reimbursement, insurance, hourly pay, and overtime.
Uber would like very much to keep its drivers as “independent contractors.” This saves Uber hundreds of millions of dollars in overhead, giving the company the $60 billion dollar valuation it has today.
But this illegal “contractor” status for Uber drivers is almost always bad for the Uber driver’s pocketbook. The result of this misclassification means Uber drivers make a lot less than other commercial drivers in California who are paid hourly. For those Uber drivers who work more than 8 hours per day, the pay from Uber often equates to less than minimum wage.
We have argued to the Federal Court that under a reasonable analysis of both applicable Federal and California law, Uber drivers are misclassified.
STATE LAW TEST: In California, courts examine regarding whether an employee is an independent contractor or an employee are as follows: (1) whether the person performing services is engaged in an occupation or business distinct from that of the principal; (2) whether or not the work is part of the regular business of the principal or alleged employer; (3) whether or not the principal or the worker supplies the instrumentalities, tools, and the place for the person doing the work; (4) the alleged employee’s investment in the equipment or materials required by his or her task or his or her employment of helpers; (5) whether the service rendered requires a special skill; (6) the kind of occupation, with reference to whether, in the locality, the work is usually done under the direction of the principal or the a specialist without supervision; (7) the alleged employee’s opportunity for profit or loss depending on his or her managerial skill; (8) the length of time for which the services are to be performed; (9) the degree of permanence of the working relationship; (10) the method of payment, whether by time or by the job; and (11) whether or not the parties believe they are creating an employer-employee relationship may have some bearing on the question, but is not determinative since this is a question of law based on objective tests. (Uber Technologies, Inc. Barbara Berwick, California Labor Commission Board Case no: 001C04954780, June 16, 2015.)
FEDERAL LAW TEST: The Administrator for the U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division recently issued new interpretations of the the definition of “employee.” The interpretation states, “most workers are employees under the [Federal overtime law].” (emphasis added.) The Interpretation follows the “economic realities” test adopted by the California Supreme Court in the case of S.G. Borello & Sons, Inc. v Dept. of Industrial Relations (1989) 48 Cal.3d 341. The economic realities test turns on a determination of whether the workers is “economically dependent” on the employer (and thus its employee) or is really in business for him or herself (and thus an independent contractor.)”
We believe that under both the California and Federal tests, Uber drivers are misclassified as independent contractors. Because of this, Uber drivers must be reimbursed for gas, and provided with insurance and hourly pay, plus overtime, for all time spent driving for Uber.
Our firm is proud to have recently partnered with widely respected attorneys, Mark Geragos and Brian Kabatek, to fight Uber on what we believe is one of the most important labor issues of our time.