Thumbs Up California!
On September 4th, Governor Gavin Newsom of California signed a bill modifying the new independent contractor law that went into effect last year. This is HUGE. The new Independent Contractor law meant freelance writers here in California could no longer earn a living beyond our state border. In two previous posts, I outlined the new law, its definition and how it might affect writers. The new, modified law, which is effective immediately, includes “freelance writers, musicians, film support crews and visual artists, who now can continue working as independent contractors.1”
Blog post #1: New CA Labor Law
Blog post #2: Writers Losing Contracts
Gov Newsom also removed the restriction of accepting no more than thirty-five (35) freelance assignments from one outlet. As of Monday night, freelance writers and other content creators are EXEMPT! The bill, previously introduced as AB5, is now AB2257 and has these features:
- It eliminates the cap of 35 submissions for freelance writers. Yippee!
- Included in this new exemption of “professional services” are translators, appraisers, and (this is a unique one) registered foresters.
- Industry workers, including recording artists, songwriters, producers and promoters are also now exempt.
This update of a law that clearly affected writers’ ability to earn a living, especially during COVID, is a ray of light bursting through dark days. Will other states with similar laws follow suit?
It’s Happening Elsewhere, Too
So do other states use what is called the ABC test? This from an article on Forbes.com: “Massachusetts and New Jersey already use the ABC Test to restrict the number of workers classified as independent contractors. Other states use the ABC Test for specific situations, such as determining unemployment compensation.”
From a legal website: “Some of the states where their legislatures have adopted the ABC test include California (recent change), Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Massachusetts, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Vermont, Washington, and West Virginia.”
Whether this change to the new law is a good thing (and I believe it is), there are still plenty of kinks to be worked out. In the meantime, writers, keep on writing. Let’s be a force for change that benefits all. Gig economies are here to stay (thanks, millenials).
So are freelancers.
#freelancers #freelancewriters #writersofcalifornia #independentcontractor #gigeconomy #Uber #Lyft #fictionwriters #nonfictionwriters #investigativejournalism