RenTech Battles Unemployment Ruling

Jan 25 2011 | 11:03am ET

Renaissance Technologies is fighting to hold on to about $100,000 after the New York State Department of Labor ruled it should have treated its security guards as employees.

The state Unemployment Insurance Appeal Board will hear RenTech's appeal today. The case stems from the 2008 unemployment filing of former security guard Louis Marsicovetere, who worked at RenTech's Manhattan office. Marsicovetere's filing was first rejected. But after several months, the state ruled in his favor, telling RenTech it should classify its security guards in both Manhattan and at its Long Island headquarters as employees, not independent contractors, and that therefore it should be paying more unemployment insurance for them.

Employment-law experts told the New York Post that the ruling could cost RenTech about $100,000.

But the hedge fund rejects the Labor Department's decision, alleging that Marsicovetere set his own hours, working as little as eight hours a week, too few to be considered an employee. But Marsicovetere says he was an employee and notes he had to wear a RenTech uniform while on the job.

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