Linton v. DeSoto Cab Co.Annotate this Case
Linton drove DeSoto taxicabs, 2008-2012, after submitting his social security number, proof that he was eligible to work in the U.S., his driver’s license, and a DMV printout. Linton signed DeSoto’s 15-page Lease without negotiating any terms. The Agreement disclaims any employment relationship. Either party could cancel with 30 days’ notice, or without notice in the event of a breach. Linton provided a $500 security deposit and attended an orientation. Drivers keep the fares and tips that they receive and pay DeSoto a gate fee of about $100 per day. DeSoto does not require drivers to check in during their shifts but the cabs are equipped with GPS tracking and have recording devices. Linton received a notice of termination after he was accused of obtaining a passenger’s credit card information and making repeated charges on her account. Linton filed a claim with the Labor Commissioner, contending that he had been misclassified as an independent contractor instead of as an employee. The Labor Commissioner concluded that Linton was an employee and assessed wages, interest, and penalties Labor Code 221, 98.1(c), and 203. A trial court concluded Linton was an independent contractor. The court of appeal reversed. The trial court failed to apply a presumption in favor of employment, misapplied precedent, and made “questionable” distinctions in analyzing the facts.