Writing in the Sacramento Bee, Berkeley Law Dean Erwin Chemerinsky says that the original writ petition in Castellanos v. State of California presents the “extraordinary circumstances” that merit the Supreme Court’s hearing a matter “without needing to wait for the lower courts.”  The petition, filed directly in the Supreme Court 10 days ago, seeks to invalidate Proposition 22, an Uber and Lyft sponsored initiative approved by the voters in November that classifies app-based drivers as independent contractors instead of employees.

Chemerinsky says that Proposition 22 “withdraws minimum employment protections from hundreds of thousands of California workers” and that the writ petition “raises many serious constitutional challenges.”

Today is the last day under the rules for the filing of an optional preliminary opposition to the petition.  If none is filed within that time, the court might ask for a preliminary opposition.

The petition asks for expedited review, but the court has no deadline to act.  At any time, it could summarily deny the petition, or it could issue an alternative writ or order to show cause, meaning the court will hear the case on the merits after full briefing and it will issue a written opinion.  Alternatively, it could direct a superior court or a Court of Appeal to decide the merits, with possible Supreme Court review somewhere down the line.


Supreme Court asked to toss Prop. 22, the Uber/Lyft-sponsored initiative