The Uber decisionIn Aslam, Farrar & others v Uber BV and Others , the Employment Tribunal in the UK held that Uber drivers were not self-employed but were workers for the purposes of enjoying rights under certain employment legislation. Uber drivers had argued that they were entitled to a range of benefits such as pension contributions as well as holiday and sick pay. On the other hand, Uber contended that these workers were self-employed due to the fact that they set their own hours and didn’t have to accept pickups. However, the Tribunal disagreed and found that the drivers were considered to be employees as, amongst other things, Uber recruited and vetted workers and undertook a certain degree of control regarding the service and payment. The decision is currently under appeal.
Ireland and the Gig EconomyThere have been no decisions on the status of these arrangements in Ireland as of yet. When deciding on the correct status of workers in Ireland, employers need to tread carefully as any novel arrangements put in place may not fit neatly within the old contract for service /contact of service model. Until the matter has been determined by the Irish courts, employers should continue to be mindful of the Code of Practice for Determining Employment or Self-Employment Status of Individuals which was published by the Revenue Commissioners and outlines the considerations that should be taken into account when determining employment status. This article first appeared as part of Legal-Island’s employment law update service. Find out more: www.legal-island.ie
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