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UBER drivers will have their legal challenge against the company heard at the Supreme Court, it was revealed yesterday.
The online-based taxi transnational has escalated the case to Britain’s highest court to appeal against judgements made in favour of the drivers.
Previously Court of Appeal judges upheld the drivers’ case demanding that Uber class them as workers rather than contractors.
Uber’s appeal will be heard remotely on July 21 and 22. The subsequent judgement will be crucial: Uber will have no further recourse if judges rule in the drivers’ favour.
If successful in their case, the drivers could be entitled to an average of £12,000 each in compensation, according to law firm Leigh Day, representing them.
The firm believes tens of thousands of Uber drivers could be eligible to make a claim, but Uber will only be legally required to compensate those who have done so.
Lawyers will argue that Uber should provide its drivers with paid holiday and ensure they earn at least the minimum wage.
Nigel Mackay, a partner in the employment team at Leigh Day, said: “We believe that it’s clear from the way Uber operates that its drivers should be given workers’ rights.
“From the amount of control it exerts over them to the ratings system it uses to assess performance: these circumstances all point to Uber drivers being workers.”
Currently Uber does not provide drivers with normal workers’ rights, claiming that they are “partners” to the company.
But an employment tribunal in 2016 found that drivers are “workers” rather than self-employed independent contractors.
The ruling was upheld by the employment appeal tribunal in November 2017 and the Court of Appeal in December 2018. However, Uber further appealed to the Supreme Court.
If the drivers succeed at the Supreme Court, the case will then return to the employment tribunal, which will decide how much compensation drivers are entitled to.
London-based Uber driver “Mike Wilkinson,” not using his real name to protect his identity, said: “Dealing with Uber can be difficult. They can ban you from driving for them at the drop of a hat and there’s no appeal process.
“It’s only fair that we have the same rights as any other workers.”
More information about the claim can be found at www.driversclaim.co.uk
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