The drivers of the Uber ridesharing app are company employees and fall under the collective labor agreement for the taxi industry, judges in Amsterdam said on Monday.
The lawsuit was brought by union FNV, which filed a lawsuit in June, arguing that Uber underpaid drivers and treated them like employees rather than independent contractors.
Uber argued that it was simply a tech company that connects drivers to drivers, but the court was not convinced. “The legal relationship between Uber and these drivers meets all the characteristics of an employment contract,” said the court.
“True self-employed people can set their own rates and determine how they do their jobs. This is not the case with drivers who drive for Uber. Uber determines the hourly rate, who can or cannot access the app, who gets which trip and how the trips are made, ”union spokesman Zakaria Boufangacha said in a statement.
This is FNV’s second win against independent contractors, after winning a similar case against food delivery company Deliveroo earlier this year. Deliveroo appealed this decision to the Dutch Supreme Court.
Uber is also considering appealing. “We are disappointed with this decision because we know that the overwhelming majority of drivers want to remain independent,” Maurits Schönfeld, Uber general manager for Northern Europe, said in a statement.
Uber was also ordered to pay a fine of € 50,000.
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