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50/50 [Joint] Employers in Washington State



The proliferation of large entities contracting and subcontracting their hiring to staffing agencies has surely streamlined, and made hiring, firing and management of employees easier for large employers. See https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2016/01/20/department-of-labor-sends-warning-shot-to-clients-of-temp-staffing-agencies/. And it was therefore inevitable that related employment legal issues would sprout from this fertile soil.

This would indicate that the Washington State Supreme Court is ready to expand the joint employer doctrine to a wider spectrum of employment issues, i.e., wage theft, wage rebate, discrimination, etc. In short, employees in these types of arrangements can actually bring litigation against their offending employers, and have some prospect of recovering damages. Simultaneously, large employers' days of limiting their legal liability to their contracted and subcontracted employees by outsourcing hiring may be numbered. This is an interesting related article. (https://www.foster.com/newsroom-alerts-washington-supreme-court-recognizes-joint-employer-liability-under-the-washington-minimum-wage-act)


Christopher J. Stockwell has been one of the best employment lawyers in Seattle for nearly a decade representing workers in a wide variety of employment claims and disputes, primarily discrimination and wrongful termination actions. Call for a free consultation.

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