A Ride Worth Fighting For

By Amanda Hayes, Managing Editor

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Commonly known as a convenient source of transportation for a wide span of demographics, Uber has been giving thousands of rides with just the tap of a finger. However, Uber has been under a great deal of scrutiny involved in lawsuits from drivers, passengers and even governments.

According to CNN, there are more than 70 pending federal lawsuits against the company with even more in state courts. These cases have been around since the launch of the company in 2009.

Why do they keep getting sued?

The main issue circulating around the brand resulted from a Boston driver filing a lawsuit in June. This was filed on behalf of all Uber drivers in Massachusetts and stems from an important issue from their company. The issue at hand is that many drivers have accused Uber of wrongly classifying them as contractors when they are treated as employees. This means they should receive wage protection, overtime, rest and meal breaks and other benefits.

This came to light in June when Abdel Karim Jbara, a Boston driver since 2013, decided to take action. This lawsuit is on behalf of all Massachusetts drivers from 2010 to present. According to Boston.com the lawsuit states, “Uber misclassifies its drivers as independent contractors in order to evade these and other protections of applicable federal and state law.” Jbara argues that the company gears advertising to look as though tipping is included in the price and does not reimburse drivers for gas money which allows the company to maintain a large income.

Is the problem resolved?

Uber settled this federal lawsuit by agreeing to pay $100 million to settle the lawsuit on behalf of these drivers however still left drivers that signed onto the lawsuit disgruntled. This is not the end for lawsuits for the company.

If Uber drivers are treated as employees then this should reflect in benefits instead of being contractors. The ever-growing lawsuits only leads to dissatisfaction with the drivers which may even make a difference in the client-base. If the brand does not listen to their employees, then they may lose their clients to competitors such as Lyft or other competitors.

Sources:

http://money.cnn.com/2016/08/11/technology/uber-lawsuits/index.html

Driver files federal lawsuit against Uber on behalf of all Mass. drivers

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