The Employment Appeal Tribunal have today agreed with the Employment Tribunal and found that Uber drivers are 'workers' for the purposes of claims under the Employment Rights Act 1996, the Working Time Regulations 1998 and National Minimum Wage Act 1998 - see Uber BV v Aslam.
When Uber drivers make themselves available for work, they have to sign into an app and be able and willing to accept assignments. Each driver has to accept 80% of trip requests and will suffer a penalty if they cancel an accepted trip. The Employment Tribunal and Jennifer Eady QC sitting in the Employment Appeal Tribunal found that this was consistent with a worker relationship. The contracts stating that the drivers were each 'self-employed' were essentially found to be a sham and disregarded by the EAT.
This decision will potentially entitle drivers to holiday pay, minimum breaks and rest periods and to be paid the national minimum wage. This is likely to have much wider implications, not only for people working in the gig economy but for delivery drivers and taxi drivers too.
However, this case shall almost certainly be appealed - possibly directly to the Supreme Court. There are other cases based on similar facts already listed before the Supreme Court.
If you would like further advice on how this decision may affect you then please contact Greystone Legal for an informal discussion.