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A divided Illinois appellate court affirmed a decision awarding workers’ compensation benefits to a long-haul truck driver on the basis that he was an employee and not an independent contractor in spite of the fact that the driver owned and supplied a relatively expensive tractor and trailer, was required to keep it in good repair, and keep inspection and maintenance records in accordance with federal regulations. The court observed that other evidence tended to show that the driver’s ownership was in name only and the control the transportation company had over the equipment was indicative of an employment relationship. The existence of an employment relationship was a question of fact for the Commission. The driver’s ability to haul for another carrier was subject to a number of conditions imposed by the transportation company. Prior to hiring on, the driver had to complete a “pre-qualification” process. He had to attend an orientation program. On the evening of the motor vehicle accident in which he was injured, the driver was called every two hours to determine his progress and he was given specific instructions with regard to the delivery. Looking at the evidence as a whole, the majority indicated it could not say the Commission had erred in finding an employment relationship.
Thomas A. Robinson, J.D., the Feature National Columnist for the LexisNexis Workers’ Compensation eNewsletter, is the co-author of Larson’s Workers’ Compensation Law (LexisNexis).
LexisNexis Online Subscribers: Citations below link to Lexis Advance. Bracketed citations link to lexis.com.
See Steel & Machinery Transp., Inc. v. Illinois Workers’ Comp. Comm’n (Cvetkovski), 2015 IL App (1st) 133985WC, 2015 Ill. App. LEXIS 329 (May 1, 2015) [2015 IL App (1st) 133985WC, 2015 Ill. App. LEXIS 329 (May 1, 2015)]
See generally Larson’s Workers’ Compensation Law, § 61.03 [61.03]
Source: Larson’s Workers’ Compensation Law, the nation’s leading authority on workers’ compensation law.
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