Class Action Against AMCs on the Horizon
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Property inspectors suing ServiceLink to obtain minimum wage…
Peter Christensen wrote another article on LinkedIn about wages being paid by lenders and AMCs. This one should get your attention as it is from Independent Contractors suing an AMC. This will set a precedent and start a chain reaction.
In a nut shell, property inspectors are suing ServiceLink for work performed to obtain minimum wage. Yes, you read that correctly, minimum wage. According to the article, property inspectors receive between $3 and $5 for each assignment.
The article does not specify the specific service the property inspectors perform, but think bifurcated or hybrid product for a moment. Someone is being paid $3-$5 to provide the data the appraiser is to rely on to complete an appraisal. How good is that data going to be?
Now think REO for a moment. Someone being paid $3-$5 is providing data to the lender or servicer on the condition of the property and making a large financial decision based on that data. See the article here.
…in a prior LinkedIn article (link), I wrote about the potential legal threat to appraisal firms relating to the classification of appraisers as independent contractors. We have not yet seen a full-scale “reclassification” class action by appraiser contractors against a mid-size or large appraisal firm (or AMC) but one sign that such a threat might be over the horizon comes from the filing of a property inspector re-classification lawsuit against a field services subsidiary of Servicelink. In Collins v. Servicelink Field Services, the plaintiff property inspector alleges that Servicelink Field Services used workers like himself who were hired through third-party vendors so that Servicelink could avoid minimum wage, overtime and other regular employee obligations. As an inspector performing property inspections delivered to Servicelink Field Services, the plaintiff alleges he was paid $3-$5 per inspection. This lawsuit was filed in San Diego Superior Court on August 10. Servicelink Field Services has removed the case to federal court and filed a motion to dismiss that is now pending.
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