The US Supreme Court on Monday failed to address in its list of case actions a pending case in which the California Trucking Association asserts California’s AB 5 legislation violates federal law, assuring an injunction against enforcing the law on the trucking industry remains in place, according to an article by Modern Shipper.
The California Trucking Association and two California independent owner-operator truck drivers argue that the “ABC” classification test set forth in the Dynamex Operations West Inc. v. Superior Court decision, and codified by AB 5, violates federal law because it is preempted by the supremacy and commerce clauses in the US Constitution and is in direct conflict with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Act and the Federal Aviation Administration Authorization Act of 1994 (F4A).
When the Supreme Court released its “orders” — a list of lower court appeals cases that it accepts or denies certiorari — the California Trucking Association’s case was not listed either as accepted or denied.
The association in January 2020 gained an injunction halting the enforcement of the law on the trucking industry pending the outcome of its lawsuit. In April 2021, the ninth circuit overturned the injunction as part of its ruling that truck drivers in California should be classified as employees rather than independent contractors. The injunction was left in place pending further appeal.
In May, the Solicitor General, the US federal government’s representative before the Supreme Court, filed a brief recommending the Supreme Court deny review of the California Trucking Association’s case.
The Supreme Court last year declined to hear a similar case between truckers and California over AB 5, that one filed by Cal Cartage Transportation Express LLC, which claimed AB 5 is preempted by the Federal Aviation Administration Authorization Act.
Separately, the US Supreme Court on Monday declined to review a challenge from the American Society for Journalists and Authors and the National Press Photographers Association to AB 5, Reuters reported. In an email, the representatives of the freelancer groups called the court’s decision “a loss for the thousands of freelancers who have built thriving careers through the freedom and flexibility that independent contracting provides.”