Uber Minimum Wage


A person preparing to use a rideshare app, Uber.

Uber has had a history of controversy from the beginning. It was originally called “Ubercab” and was run like an unlicensed taxi service. This made many people, especially taxi drivers, upset. Uber has also had a huge problem with both drivers and passengers being sexually assaulted. Uber changed their name to help resolve the taxi issue and they have put in new measures like better driver background checks to prevent more assaults. There is one problem that they did not address properly until recently, however: how much should the drivers get paid?

Uber considered its drivers to be independent contractors, which means that they are technically self-employed and that they do work for a separate entity. But, they are not employees and do not get certain benefits like paid vacation and minimum wage. Some drivers do not make minimum wage if you factor in things like gas. However, this is all changing in the U.K. where drivers now have to be considered workers.

A recent court ruling in the U.K. says that Uber now has to consider its drivers “workers” and pay them minimum wage. This is a big win for those pushing rideshare apps to pay their drivers more. It does not mean that they are full time employees, though. This allows drivers to still have the flexibility that they had before.

Started by Uber in 2009, the idea of a rideshare app is a relatively new one. This leaves many confused as to what regulations and laws to put in place regarding them. The U.K. requiring Uber to pay its drivers minimum wage could spark a change in other countries as well. California has some rules set in place to make sure that drivers will get paid enough. It is hard to know what will happen to these apps and their drivers. There are many good arguments on both sides. No matter what you think, it will be interesting to see how this unfolds and what other things it could apply to.