Uber Appeals Barbara Berwick’s case Ruling, claims having Independent Contractor Model

Uber Appeals Barbara Berwick’s case Ruling, claims having Independent Contractor

Uber is yet again in news, and this time the ride-hailing company strives to press the validity of its employment rules. Uber is appealing the ruling of California Labour Commission that awarded Barbara Berwick with a reimbursement of $4,152 from Uber. It was ruled that Berwick is an employee of the company and not an independent contractor.

Uber currently follows the independent contractor model under which the business expenses are shifted on the drivers who more akin to business partners than employees. Thus, under this model Uber does not buy the vehicle or the gasoline and it has nothing to do with payroll taxes or workers’ compensation costs.

Stephanie Barrett, a hearing officer ruling on behalf of the commission has challenged the business model of Uber claiming that Uber extensively controls its drivers, and interferes in every aspect; the fares they can charge, the model of cars they drive, how often they work and even controls their wages as the drivers are not allowed to negotiate the percentage of the fare, which is around 20%.

Barrett asserted that therefore, the claims of Berwick who argued that the company owed her money for costs she incurred while driving customers around in the car she owned was justified.

However, since this ruling could spur more claims by current and former Uber drivers, the company issued a statement that the ruling pertains only to Berwick.

Uber further asserted,” It’s important to remember that the number one reason drivers choose to use Uber is because they have complete flexibility and control”.