Victory for Uber drivers

A case brought by Uber drivers, supported by their trade union GMB, has resulted in a verdict with far-reaching consequences. The court held that the drivers could not be treated as self-employed, but were in fact workers; this means that the minimum  wage should apply, they should get statutory sick pay, parental leave and paid holidays.

Many employers have people working for them that they treat as “freelance” so this judgment may affect them too. The facts of this case turned on the issue of control, for example:

  • Uber controls passenger information
  • Uber requires drivers to accept trips and not cancel them
  • Uber fixes the fare
  • Uber fixes the route
  • Uber subjects drivers to a rating system which leads to performance assessment and disciplinary procedures

The so-called gig economy is growing but there is also resistance to it. Please get in touch if you are concerned about the employment status of any of your freelancers and we will be happy to advise.