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Trump administration could change the definition of an independent contractor any day now

Robyn Beck/AFP via Getty Images

Less than a week before voters decide whether Donald Trump receives a second term as president, his administration stands ready to establish a new federal rule on who counts as an employee in the U.S.


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The employee-vs.-independent contractor question is at the heart of long-running battles between gig-economy companies like Uber Technologies Inc. (UBER) Lyft Inc. (LYFT) regulators and legislators. In California, gig companies have placed an initiative on the November ballot to try to absolve themselves of state labor law.

The U.S. Department of Labor says it’s trying to simplify the standard for who should be considered an independent contractor and an employee, but attorneys general from nearly half the states in the nation say the change would instead complicate the issue further and encourage more companies to misclassify workers.

In a letter sent this week to Labor Secretary Eugene Scalia

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