Uber loses latest legal bid over driver pension rights

Written by Jack Gray

Uber has lost its latest appeal against a court decision that found its drivers should be regarded as workers, not self-employed, thus confirming the workers’ pension rights.

The Court of Appeal rejected the firms appeal against a tribunal decision in 2016 that ruled Uber’s workers have worker status and should not be considered as self-employed.

As a result of the ruling, Uber drivers should be granted access to workers’ rights, including being auto-enrolled into a pension scheme, as well as minimum wage and paid holidays.

Commenting on the ruling, Gowling WLG principal associate Liz Wood said: “As well as the impact on workers’ holiday and sick pay entitlements this decision could have important implications for their pension benefits.

“It is a legal requirement for all employers with UK workers who meet certain criteria to automatically enrol those workers into a qualifying workplace pension arrangement.

“If Uber haven’t been treating their drivers as workers then presumably this hasn’t been done and would need to be factored into the overall wage bill going forwards.

“It also remains to be seen how it would be dealt with retrospectively.”

Two of the three Court of Appeal judges ruled that Uber drivers should not be considered self-employed.

However, Uber plans to appeal the decision to the Supreme Court as one of the judges backed its case and the ruling was not unanimous.

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