- Massachusetts has filed a lawsuit towards Uber and Lyft accusing the businesses of misclassifying drivers as contractors and denying them advantages and office protections.
- “Uber and Lyft have constructed their billion-dollar companies whereas denying their drivers fundamental worker protections and advantages for years,” Lawyer Basic Maura Healey mentioned in a press launch.
- The businesses argue that reclassifying drivers as workers would put a lot of them out of labor and cut back their flexibility.
- California additionally sued Uber and Lyft earlier this yr, and the 2 lawsuits might have huge implications for the ride-hailing giants’ enterprise fashions.
- Go to Enterprise Insider’s homepage for extra tales.
Massachusetts’ state legal professional normal’s workplace has filed a lawsuit towards Uber and Lyft that accuses the ride-hailing firms of illegally misclassifying drivers as unbiased contractors.
The lawsuit, which was made public on Tuesday, asks for the courtroom to rule that drivers needs to be thought-about workers underneath Massachusetts legislation and asks for an injunction prohibiting the businesses from denying drivers “any of the protections” assured to workers throughout the state.
“Uber and Lyft have constructed their billion-dollar companies whereas denying their drivers fundamental worker protections and advantages for years,” Lawyer Basic Maura Healey mentioned in a press launch. “This enterprise mannequin is unfair and exploitative. We’re in search of this willpower from the courtroom as a result of these drivers have a proper to be handled pretty.”
The businesses argue that reclassifying drivers as workers would put a lot of them out of labor and cut back their flexibility, and have famous in regulatory filings that their enterprise fashions would even be considerably damage.
“At a time when Massachusetts’ financial system is in disaster with a document 16% unemployment price, we have to make it simpler, not tougher, for individuals to rapidly begin incomes an earnings. We’ll contest this motion in courtroom, because it flies within the face of what the overwhelming majority of drivers need: to work independently,” an Uber spokesperson informed Enterprise Insider in an announcement. “We stand able to work with the state to modernize our legal guidelines, in order that unbiased employees obtain new protections whereas sustaining the flexibleness they like.”
“This lawsuit threatens to get rid of work for greater than 50,000 individuals in Massachusetts on the worst doable time. Drivers don’t desire this — 89% of Massachusetts Lyft drivers drive fewer than 20 hours per week and select to drive rideshare exactly due to the independence it offers them to make cash of their spare time,” a Lyft spokesperson informed Enterprise Insider.
Within the grievance, nonetheless, Healey’s workplace says Uber and Lyft fail to satisfy a three-part take a look at that permits employers to legally classify employees as contractors. The take a look at requires that: drivers are free from the corporate’s “route and management,” their work is “outdoors the same old course” of the the corporate’s enterprise, they usually’re sometimes doing the identical kind of labor they do for the corporate.
The same requirement exists in California, which sued Uber and Lyft in Could over drivers’ employment standing. Its lawsuit, which was additionally introduced by metropolis attorneys normal from Los Angeles, San Francisco, and San Diego, accused the businesses of evading “office requirements” to keep away from the price of offering advantages like minimal wage, paid sick go away, and medical insurance advantages.
Massachusetts’ lawsuit provides to the pushback towards ride-hail firms over their remedy of drivers, which has escalated in the course of the coronavirus pandemic as many have discovered themselves with out sick pay or medical insurance or unable to entry unemployment advantages.
Uber and Lyft have fought aggressively towards makes an attempt to reclassify drivers as workers, together with lobbying Congress to have taxpayers foot the invoice for unemployment profit applications (which firms pay into on behalf of workers, however not contractors), and spending $30 million every on a poll measure that may exempt them from the California’s legislation they’re at present battling in courtroom.
Axel Springer, Insider Inc.’s dad or mum firm, is an investor in Uber.