Uber drivers yesterday won a unique case in an employment tribunal after judges ruled they were entitled to the national living wage, sick pay and holiday pay. The case involved just two drivers but leaves Uber exposed to further claims and has far reaching implications for all employers operating on a similar basis. Four courier businesses are also facing action, with the first case scheduled for November.
The outcome of the Uber hearing reflects a wider concern over employment practices within the gig economy. Earlier this year Citizens Advice suggested that up to 460,000 people could be ‘bogusly self-employed’ and the government recently announced a review of working practices to address this problem. Prior to yesterday’s ruling, the CIPD observed that the ‘grey areas’ regarding self-employment are likely to be the ‘biggest workplace legal issue of the next decade’.
The ruling has the potential to severely disrupt working practices for all businesses adopting Uber’s model.