In a recent ruling it was decided that the ride-sharing app Uber misclassified one of its drivers as an independent contractor when they should have been labeled as a regular employee. The technology company has stuck by its claims that it is only an app that connects people who need rides with drivers looking to make a buck, but the California Labor Commissioner’s Office felt differently. It feels the driver that filed the suit was treated more like an employee.
The suit is being appealed by Uber, but whether or not it succeeds in having the ruling repealed, the door has been flung open for other misclassified employees in other companies. Other technology companies, like Uber’s competitor Lyft, have been able to operate with a lot more gray area due to the nature of their work. Cases such as this one will make the lines much clearer as more and more courts are looking over the nature of these company’s relationships with their “contractors.”
Supporters of the decision to reclassify the Uber driver as a regular employee have said that it is a step in the right direction. Many of these activists claim that companies such as Uber and Lyft are really just taking advantage of people by labeling them as independent contractors in order to keep their own costs down while still holding power over the driver like any other employer. They say that these people should be getting all the same benefits as any other employee, such as job security and reimbursement for “business expenses.”
Uber and other companies like it still assert that they only bring people together and that they pride themselves on being able to afford people with the freedom and flexibility to work whenever they want.
Atkerson Law – Dallas employment lawyer