NEW YORK – The California Labor Commission has ruled that a driver for popular ride-hailing service Uber should be considered a company employee, not an independent contractor.
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The driver, Barbara Ann Berwick, filed a claim last year saying Uber owed her unpaid wages and other expenses. Uber has long contended that it is a technological platform used by independent drivers and their passengers to arrange and pay for rides.
The commission, however, found that Uber acted like an employer, and the driver, like a delivery person for a pizza parlor, was an employee.
San Francisco-based Uber says the ruling is non-binding and only applies to one driver.
The ruling is among legal challenges facing the company, along with Lyft, another ride-hailing service, from drivers seeking benefits and protections afforded to regular workers.