Courtesy of GrubHub

The gig economy's question of whether workers should be classified as employees has a new chance at getting an answer. On Thursday, a San Francisco magistrate judge ruled to let a former driver's lawsuit against food ordering company GrubHub to move forward, as Ars Technica reported. It's now scheduled for a trial in the fall.

Why this matters: Companies that provide on-demand services have long been criticized for classifying their workers as independent contractors instead of employees as a way to avoid providing them with benefits, which are costly, despite many of them working full-time hours. But as more workers shift to freelance work and new business models (and mobile apps) make it possible for industries to rethink labor, we'll need to figure out how companies should interact with their workers.

Unlike other food delivery companies like DoorDash and Postmates, GrubHub's core business doesn't employee drivers — restaurants are responsible for the deliveries themselves. GrubHub's foray into providing delivery for orders from eateries without drivers is a relatively new development to help the company service more merchants.

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Updated 7 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 10 p.m. ET: 32,471,119 — Total deaths: 987,593 — Total recoveries: 22,374,557Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 10 p.m. ET: 7,032,524 — Total deaths: 203,657 — Total recoveries: 2,727,335 — Total tests: 99,483,712Map.
  3. States: "We’re not closing anything going forward": Florida fully lifts COVID restaurant restrictions — Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam tests positive for coronavirus.
  4. Health: Young people accounted for 20% of cases this summer.
  5. Business: Coronavirus has made airports happier places The expiration of Pandemic Unemployment Assistance looms.
  6. Education: Where bringing students back to school is most risky.
Mike Allen, author of AM
9 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Biden pushes unity message in new TV wave

A fresh Joe Biden ad, "New Start," signals an effort by his campaign to make unity a central theme, underscoring a new passage in his stump speech that says he won't be a president just for Democrats but for all Americans.

What he's saying: The ad — which began Friday night, and is a follow-up to "Fresh Start" — draws from a Biden speech earlier in the week in Manitowoc, Wisconsin:

Trump prepares to announce Amy Coney Barrett as Supreme Court replacement

Judge Amy Coney Barrett. Photo: Matt Cashore/Notre Dame University via Reuters

President Trump is preparing to nominate federal appeals court Judge Amy Coney Barrett of Indiana, a favorite of both the social conservative base and Republican elected officials, to succeed Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Republican sources tell Axios.

Why it matters: Barrett would push the already conservative court further and harder to the right, for decades to come, on the most important issues in American politics — from abortion to the limits of presidential power. If confirmed, she would give conservatives a 6-3 majority on the high court.

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