California Judge Outlaws Uber and Lyft’s Attempt to Deny Employment Benefits to Drivers

 Posted on August 25, 2021 in Personal Injury

Cook County rideshare injury liability lawyersBy: Jessica Black

On August 20, 2021, a California judge issued a decision striking down a ballot measure in the state that had allowed rideshare companies to classify drivers as independent contractors rather than employees. The measure, known as Proposition 22, allowed rideshare companies such as Uber and Lyft to deny drivers employee benefits and job protections such as the right to sick pay, minimum wage, and health benefits. It also provided a liability shield that allowed Uber and Lyft to evade responsibility for the actions of their drivers.

Ride-hailing and delivery service corporations including Uber, Lyft, Postmates, Instacart, and DoorDash spent more than $200 million attempting to influence Californians to support the ballot measure. Uber and Lyft went so far as threatening to stop providing services in the state if the measure was not passed.

This behavior has become a common modus operandi for Uber, Lyft, and other companies across the United States. They have proven that they will spend millions in lobbying campaigns and targeted marketing to ensure their drivers do not become employees.

Ultimately, California Judge Frank Roesch issued a ruling in favor of the drivers, as well as the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), reasoning that the proposition unconstitutionally blocked the legislature’s ability to ensure that employees were able to receive workers’ compensation benefits.

Uber has announced plans to appeal the judge’s ruling. In opposition, the president of the California State Council of the SEIU applauded Judge Roesch’s decision, stating that this was a major victory that would protect workers’ rights and emphasizing the idea that democracy cannot be purchased. Keeping Proposition 22 would eradicate workers’ rights across the United States, allowing corporations to protect their profits rather than the people they rely on to operate the company. SEIU’s attorney has announced that the organization anticipates and is ready for Uber’s appeal.

At Tomasik Kotin Kasserman, LLC, we provide representation for those who have been injured because of the actions of rideshare drivers. We work to help our clients pursue compensation from Uber, Lyft, or other rideshare companies for injuries related to sexual assaults by drivers, car accidents, or other types of cases. Contact our Chicago rideshare injury attorneys at 312-605-8800 to set up a free consultation.


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