SAN DIEGO — A judge has lifted the preliminary injunction that barred California from enforcing its AB5 law. Despite that, challenges to the law restricting the use of independent contractors continue.
Judge Benitez of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California lifted the injunction following a hearing Aug. 29. This follows the U.S. Supreme Court declining to review California Trucking Association v. Bonta in June, a move that put the case back into appellate court — which itself mandated the district court reverse the injunction.
This doesn’t mean that the case is over. The California Trucking Association (CTA) is now arguing that AB5, which requires businesses apply an ABC test to determine whether workers are classified as independent contractors or employees, violates parts of the Federal Aviation Administration Authorization Act. CTA is asking for a new injunction, which, if successful, will go into effect this fall.
The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association has also filed a motion to intervene, which the court is expected to consider.
The CTA has until Oct. 11 to file a renewed motion for a preliminary injunction. The deadline for final briefs regarding another injunction is Dec. 2. The court will decide whether to schedule any hearings after that.
AB5 is a controversial change to the way independent contractors are classified in California. Many of those opposed to the law believe it will make it almost impossible to operate as independent contractors in the state. Following the Supreme Court’s decision not to take the case, many drivers hit the streets and ports in protest.
Also on Aug. 29, Alameda County’s Superior Court of California approved the Port of Oakland’s motion for a stipulated permanent injunction in response to the protests was approved. The injunction is aimed at stopping protesters from blocking traffic and impeding commerce.
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