UK Supreme Court Rules That Uber Drivers Are Officially Workers

February 22, 2021

A Supreme Court decision has ruled that Uber drivers are workers, not third-party contractors. The decision has been labelled as ‘historic’ and could change the future of the gig economy. 

As the Supreme Court is the highest court in England and Wales, Uber will not be able to appeal this decision and drivers will now be entitled to national minimum wage and holiday pay. 

Judges said that the contracts drivers were asked to sign ‘can be seen to have as their object precluding a driver from claiming rights conferred on workers by the applicable legislation’. 

Uber argued drivers were contractors not workers, and had appealed to the Supreme Court after losing three earlier rounds of the fight. Seven justices dismissed this unanimously, including Lord Leggatt, who ruled that an original employment tribunal was “entitled to find that the claimant drivers were ‘workers’.” 

While Uber has not disclosed the number of drivers it has in the UK, it revealed in September 2020 that more than 45,000 private hire drivers regularly used the Uber app in London. It is estimated that the Supreme Court judgment will impact more than 60,000 drivers and could have similar ramifications for other firms that use a similar business model.  

We are now fighting for justice for the drivers who have missed out on years of national minimum wage and holiday pay. We believe that former and current drivers, who drove for the ride-hailing service at any point between 2015 and 2021, could be entitled to up to £12,000 in compensation. 

Chris Neill, Partner and Chief Legal Officer, said: “The Supreme Court has laid out in no uncertain terms that Uber, through their exploitative driver contracts, have withheld the applicable protections conferred on their drivers by employment law.”

“We estimate that around 300,000 honest and hard-working Uber drivers have worked under these contracts from June 2015 onwards,” he continued.

“We believe that these drivers are now entitled to bring action against Uber, and we feel it is imperative that they have the opportunity to do so.”

We are taking the claim against Uber on a No-Win, No-Fee basis, meaning you will only pay a percentage of the compensation if we are successful with your claim.  

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