June 20, 2011(Key vote)
Title: Freelance Wage Protection
Vote Smart's Synopsis:
Vote to pass a bill that establishes wage protections for independent contractors who do not receive agreed-upon payments from clients.
-Defines independent contractor as a "sole proprietor who is not an employee and who is hired or retained by a client for an amount equal to or greater than $600" (Sec. 1).
-Authorizes Department of Labor to review complaints, make claims for compensation, and access liquid damages (Sec. 1).
-Authorizes awards of reasonable attorney fees and liquidated damages (Sec. 1).
-Specifies that complaints must be made within 6 years of failure to receive payment (Sec. 1).
-Establishes penalty for failure to pay compensation as follows (Sec. 1):
-First Offense: Misdemeanor Conviction, with a fine of no less than $500 and no more than $20,000, or imprisonment for no more than 1 year; and
-Second or Subsequent Offenses within 6 years of the first: Felony Conviction, with a fine of no less than $500 and no more than $20,000, or imprisonment for no more than 1 year plus 1 day.
-Specifies that this act shall become effective immediately (Sec. 2).