March 20, 2020

Derek Ishikawa Comments to Daily Journal on Gig Workers & the Pandemic

Hirschfeld Kraemer LLP’s Derek Ishikawa was quoted in a March 20, 2020 Daily Journal article entitled “As virus worsens, gig workers want AB 5 employee law enforced.”

The articles notes that the virus has severely impacted gig economy workers, who want state lawmakers to aggressively enforce A.B. 5 in order to help them deal with significant declines in demand, lost wages, and greater exposure to the virus.

But court closures, state officials working from home, and a growing number of people seeking government relief will all impact the state’s capacity to meet gig workers’ demands, Ishikawa said. “The plight of gig workers is unfortunately just a small fraction of the overall plight of laid off employees and underworked employees,” he added. “This is just not going to be at the top of [the government’s] priorities.”

Noting that gig workers are already pursuing enforcement of A.B. 5 through litigation, it would be hard for government officials to force companies to immediately classify workers as employees. “You can’t have your cake and eat it too,” Ishikawa said.

To read the full article, CLICK HERE (subscription required).

Derek Ishikawa is an associate in the Santa Monica office of Hirschfeld Kraemer. He can be reached at, or (310) 835-1803.