Court affirms Amazon Flex Drivers as Employees

Across the country, as more and more Amazon vans are seen on our highways and in our communities, a battle is going on over whether the drivers, known as Amazon Flex drivers, are independent contractors or employees of Amazon.

Recently, the Wisconsin Supreme Court affirmed a court of appeals decision holding that Amazon Flex drivers were not independent contractors.

Amazon Van Flex Drivers

This is an important and critical issue for the safety of our communities and in terms of holding Amazon accountable for accidents and injuries caused by the flex drivers.

The Amazon Flex program hires workers (whom Amazon sees as independent contractors) to deliver small packages out of their own cars. There is no Amazon-provided vehicle, and much of the Flex “fleet” is made up of individual automobiles rather than delivery vans. 

Generally, and dependent upon each state’s laws, independent contractor law often turns on a multipronged test that an employer will be judged on in litigation or regulation. The test determines whether a worker is truly independent or is an employee, regardless of whether the employer classifies that worker as independent.

Amazon Flex Drivers

Why does Amazon want these drivers to be classified as independent contractors – the reasoning, in my opinion, involves benefits such as worker compensation for a driver that suffers an injury, but, as important, to avoid being held responsible and accountable if a driver causes injuries and damages in an accident.

As an attorney handling serious injury and wrongful death claims caused by truck drivers, Kevin Coluccio of Coluccio law praised the Wisconsin court for this holding.  While the main issue in the case involved Workers Compensation and employment benefits for the drivers, the ruling is a major victory for the general public and particularly the victims of accidents caused by Amazon Flex drivers.

It is critical for the safety of our communities for Amazon to be held accountable for the wrongful acts of the drivers traveling throughout our roadways for the purpose of delivering Amazon packages.

We look for more courts to follow the lead of the Wisconsin Supreme Court.

If you or a loved one have been involved in an accident with an Amazon Flex driver, Kevin Coluccio is available to review the matter and provide a free consultation.  Kevin is the only Washington State based Certified Truck Accident attorney.

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