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Uber’s Massive Setback: UK Workers Earn Employee Status

Travis Kalanick

Uber drivers in the UK are now entitled to paid holidays and minimum wage, a London tribunal ruled Friday.

The ruling stands to drastically increase Uber’s costs in the UK and impact 30,000 drivers, and it could influence an ongoing class-action suit by drivers in California and Massachusetts, the Wall Street Journal reports. Uber argues it is a technology platform that merely matches riders with drivers and therefore should have no employer-employee obligations to its drivers.

“This judgment is likely to have massive implications across the gig economy, as we see an increasing number of startup businesses effectively adopting Uber’s model,” says Winckworth Sherwood associate solicitor Tim Goodwin. “Those kinds of business may owe a lot more to their workers, such as paid holiday and minimum wage, than they had bargained for.” [WSJ]