Las Vegas Sun

September 22, 2014

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Nevada Supreme Court says taxi drivers must get minimum wage

CARSON CITY — The Nevada Supreme Court has ruled that taxi drivers must be paid at least minimum wage.

In a 4-3 decision, the court ruled today in favor of Las Vegas taxi drivers Christopher Thomas and Christopher Craig, who filed suit on behalf of all drivers not receiving the state minimum wage and seeking back wages.

Clark County District Court Judge Ronald Israel had previously dismissed the lawsuit on motions by Nevada Yellow Cab, Nevada Checker Cab and Nevada Star Cab. But the Supreme Court today overturned that ruling and sent the case back to District Court.

A 1965 law exempted cab drivers from receiving minimum wage. But voters in 2006 passed a constitutional amendment increasing the minimum wage.

Nevada’s minimum wage now stands at $7.25 an hour if an employer offers health insurance and $8.25 an hour if health insurance is not provided.

The cab companies argued that the constitutional amendment did not replace the 1965 exemption. But Justice Michael Cherry, who wrote the majority opinion, said the amendment effectively repealed the previous law.

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