Uber Drivers Are Not Employees Under Federal Law, Judge Rules

Uber India Aims to Help Reduce Traffic Congestion With Its Movement Tool

UBER DRIVERS are freelancers rather than employees, a United States judge had ruled.

Baylson's opinion focused on criteria enumerated in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit's 1985 ruling in Donovan v. DialAmerica Marketing for determining whether a worker is an employee under the FLSA, and found that most factors indicated Uber limo drivers are independent contractors.

The U.S. Federal Trade Commission said on Thursday the ride-hailing company Uber Technologies Inc had agreed to expand its proposed settlement with the agency over charges it deceived consumers about its privacy and data security practices. In making their arguments, Uber portrayed the plaintiffs " as entrepreneurial business-owners who use UberBlack as a means of acquiring trip requests, with their primary competition coming from other Limousine-for-hire companies". The plaintiffs said Uber failed to pay them minimum wage and overtime in violation of the Fair Labor Standards Act, which only applies to employees.

Uber places no restrictions on drivers' ability to engage in personal activities while Online, and Plaintiffs here, in fact, engaged in a range of personal activities while Online. Uber has always maintained its drivers work on the their own time and qualify as independent contractors, or freelancers.

Jeremy Abay, a lawyer for the plaintiffs, said he would appeal the ruling to the Philadelphia-based 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

The Grubhub case was the first of its kind against a so-called gig economy company to go to trial.

Matthew Hank of Littler Mendelson represented Uber.

The Uber drivers involved in the suit also alleged that the firm violated its fiduciary duty to drivers by launching the cheaper UberX service.

"I am pleased that just a few months after announcing this incident, we have reached a speedy resolution with the FTC that holds Uber accountable for the mistakes of the past by imposing new requirements that reasonably fit the facts", West said. The issue about whether the drivers are employees or independent contractors emerged as a central issue in the litigation. Florida ruled that Uber drivers aren't employees.

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