Southern California Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf

SCRID is an affiliate chapter of the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (RID). It is the mission of Southern California Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf to provide local forums and an organizational structure for the continued growth and development of the professions of interpretation and transliteration of American Sign Language and English.

Final Update

California Assembly Bill 2257 (AB5 "Cleanup Bill")

AB2257, the "cleanup bill" to AB5, was signed into law September 2020, and DOES include an interpreter exemption! 

Ultimately and in essence, under AB2257 effective as of 1/1/20 agencies are able to contract under the referral agency structure with interpreters “certified or registered” by a state-recognized entity or by the RID. It appears this means the current state recognition of the EIPA and ESSE in k-12, legal certification in the courts, and RID certifications are recognized within the referral agency portion of the exemption. Further analysis will be required to determine the application of the term “registered” to our field and whether or not this would include, for example, associate members of RID. Additionally, those working in a language for which there is no current certification available are included in the exemption. Finally, the business-to-business section of AB2257 was reworked a bit, which may open an opportunity to pursue that business model. Again, further analysis will be necessary to work out all the details and impacts of this bill on our field.

It is also important to note the bill text incorporates an element of flexibility. The state has the ability to recognize additional certifications, which would then automatically fall within the exemption. Should licensure be established, allowing an industry-specific compilation of qualifications to be created, licensed interpreters would then also fall under those with whom agencies may contract using the referral agency structure.

The language is not perfect, but AB2257 does provide viable pathways to relief from AB5. It does preserve the option to continue working with agencies as an independent contractor, while of course, the option to seek employment with agencies remains!

Read Full Text of AB2257

Last Updated: 15 September 2020


California Assembly Bill 5 (AB5)

Read Full Text of AB5



ASL Town Hall Meeting Recording & Slides

CART link:

Slides: AB5 TownHall PPT GLAD.pdf

Note, this event did not have the setup to embed live captions on the Facebook stream. The link above will open in a separate window, which can be sized next to or above/below the townhall video. 

Townhalls were held 10/26/19 at OC Deaf, 11/02/19 at CODIE, and 11/09/19 at GLAD. All townhalls were livestreamed to SCRID's facebook page and may be found there.




General understanding of this bill is that it was written in response to concern over companies, especially in the gig economy, who may be taking advantage of the independent contractor (IC) status in their business relationships. Uber and Lyft are the two companies most of us are aware of at the center of the discussion that drew the authoring of this bill. The bill was signed into law by Governor Newsom 18 September 2019 and will become effective 01 January 2020.

As it relates to the interpreting & captioning professions, it seems this law will no longer allow interpreting/CART agencies to work with interpreters/captioners as ICs. They may instead hire the provider as an employee, or potentially enter into a business-to-business relationship with a provider who has formally set up their own business. There is some grey area in the law, subject to further scrutiny and interpretation. For example the business-to-business relationship may or may not be effective in our field due to a question of who is receiving the provider services; and agencies whose business model is validly that of a referral service may be able to continue to classify providers as ICs. Additionally, it seems providers may continue to work as ICs if they are working directly with the requestor and the work being done is not in the usual course of the requestor's business.

Many professions have been exempted from this new law, but sign language interpreters/sign language translators/captioners(CART) have not been included in these exemptions.

A little background... 

AB 5 codifies a 2018 ruling of the California Supreme Court in Dynamex Operations West, Inc. v. Superior Court (2018) 4 Cal.5th 903. Under this new law, most California workers are presumed to be an employee for purposes of the Labor Code, the Unemployment Insurance Code, and for the wage orders of the Industrial Welfare Commission. If effect, while it does simplify the test used to determine a worker's status, it makes it more difficult for CA workers in general to be classified as ICs.

Under the Dynamex ruling, as of April 2018 the Borello test, the standard for establishing independent contractor (IC) status since 1989, has been replaced by the ABC test. This test stipulates the following criteria must be met to classify a worker as an IC:

1) The company must not be able to control or direct what the worker does, either by contract or in actual practice; 

2) the worker must perform tasks outside of the hiring entity’s usual course of business; and 

3) the worker must be engaged in an independently established trade, occupation, or business.

To be clear, the ABC test has been the standard since April 2018 due to case law. The passing of AB5 does not introduce a new standard, but rather moves case law into statutory law, in effect strengthening its power. It is the second criteria in the ABC test that is generally seen to pose the most risk to the current business practice of interpreter & CART providers.

Informational Links:

“California Assembly Bill 5 (2019),” Wikipedia:

“Deconstructing Dynamex,” Los Angeles Lawyer, Sep 2018:

“Independent Contractors May Actually be Employees,” American Bar Association, 23 Nov 2018:

"AB5 gig work bill: All your Questions Answered," San Francisco Chronicle, 16 Sep 2019:

"California has a new law for contract workers. But many businesses aren’t ready for change," LA Times, 29 Sep 2019:

"California's contract worker law could add health coverage for some but put others at risk," LA Times, 04 Oct 2019:

"California's contract worker law could add health coverage for some but put others at risk," LA Times, 04 Oct 2019:

"How to Set up a Sole Proprietorship in CA," General Information 2019

A good basic explanation of California’s legislative process and how to take part: 

“The California Legislature 101,” Indivisible CA: State Strong, 2019

Letters Submitted to the Legislature Prior to AB5 Passing:

SCRID Ltr AB5 190827.pdf

RID Letter on CA AB5 August 2019.pdf

ALC - Worker Classification Statement.pdf



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