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Phil O'Keefe

Update on AB 5 (California independent contractor law impacting musicians)

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Looks like an amendment to AB 5 has been introduced that would address the concerns that many musicians, recording engineers and independent record producers in California now have concerning the new laws pertaining to employee status for musicians. It would exempt "musicians and music industry professionals." 

The measure,  Senate Bill 881, was authored by State Senator Brian Jones (R) from California's 38th Senate District.  

https://jones.cssrc.us/content/senator-brian-jones-introduces-measure-exempt-musicians-music-industry-professionals-ab-5

https://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/billNavClient.xhtml?bill_id=201920200SB881

 

SB 881 (Jones) would amend section 2750.3(c)(2)(B) to add an exemption for “A person providing services as a musician or music industry professional, except where a collective bargaining agreement applies.”

https://www.natlawreview.com/article/ab-5-under-fire-2020

 

 

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For those who want to refer to previous discussions about California AB5, here are the links:

 

 

 

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This is good news.   Although, to be honest, I fully expected this.

My experience with laws/regulations that don't end up working out as intended is that they generally get revised/over-turned pretty quickly.

On a related note, this law also seems to be affecting people in my industry (real estate appraisers) as well.   I got a notice a few weeks back from my biggest client that they would no longer be hiring independent appraisers in California and would only be using their own staff appraisers going forward.   As I don't really do any work for them in CA (or much at all for anyone anymore, TBH) it had no effect on me.    But I would expect a carve-out for appraisers soon enough as well.  

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I'll be watching this (SB 881) closely to see if it does in fact come up for a vote. AB5 has been having a serious impact on the music industry in California, and it's been making a lot of people nervous to the point where they have just given up on doing independent recording projects. I sure hope it does come up for a vote, and that it passes, but hey, this is California we're talking about. You never know what they're going to do in Sacramento, and unexpected consequences are to be expected... :lol: 

I'm not surprised to learn that AB-5 is impacting real estate appraisers too. I wonder if it also impacts home inspectors? My wife's brother used to be a general contractor, then switched to doing pre-sale home inspections when he semi-retired. I don't know if the people (or real estate agents) who hire them also have to treat them as if they were their employers or not. As with appraisers, it wouldn't surprise me if they did though. 

 

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The whole thing is patently silly:  Dictate what type of business relationships free, consenting adults can have, for the purposes of fitting a tax/legal structure that benefits the state.

If the state was in charge of making peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, they'd eliminate the bread, to minimize impact on government operations.

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9 minutes ago, Phil O'Keefe said:

I'll be watching this (SB 881) closely to see if it does in fact come up for a vote. AB5 has been having a serious impact on the music industry in California, and it's been making a lot of people nervous to the point where they have just given up on doing independent recording projects. I sure hope it does come up for a vote, and that it passes, but hey, this is California we're talking about. You never know what they're going to do in Sacramento, and unexpected consequences are to be expected... :lol: 

I'm not surprised to learn that AB-5 is impacting real estate appraisers too. I wonder if it also impacts home inspectors? My wife's brother used to be a general contractor, then switched to doing pre-sale home inspections when he semi-retired. I don't know if the people (or real estate agents) who hire them also have to treat them as if they were their employers or not. As with appraisers, it wouldn't surprise me if they did though. 

 

I would think it depends largely on who is doing the hiring.    As most home inspections are hired by the person buying a home, while it may or may not be technically legal under AB5, I would think it mostly just flies under the table.   IIRC, when I got an inspection when I bought my home, I just wrote the dude a check out of my personal checking account.   How he accounted for that and how it may or may not have been detected by the state (had it been in CA) under AB5?   I don't know.    

I can tell you that with my band, which is hired almost exclusively to do private events for private individuals, it hasn't come up yet for anything we have booked in CA.   Even with the corp gigs we have booked, it hasn't (yet) been an issue.   

In the case of appraisals, most of my work is independently contracted from large firms/banks who send me 1099s every year.   

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Phil O'Keefe said:

I'm not surprised to learn that AB-5 is impacting real estate appraisers too. I wonder if it also impacts home inspectors? My wife's brother used to be a general contractor, then switched to doing pre-sale home inspections when he semi-retired. I don't know if the people (or real estate agents) who hire them also have to treat them as if they were their employers or not. As with appraisers, it wouldn't surprise me if they did though. 

I saw a few articles that the trucking industry had a lot of issues with it too. Specifically independent owner operators. 

Edited by NOS68
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