What Next For Uber-Driver Litigation?
August 21, 2016
Now that the controversial proposed settlement of an Uber-driver class action has been rejected by Judge Edward M. Chen of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, more than 300,000 drivers could be dropped from the matter. Judge Chen ruled that the proposed $100 million settlement was not adequate in a case that he said could have as much as $1 billion at stake. What will happen next is not clear, but plaintiff attorney Shannon Liss-Riordan said the case could instead go to trial with individual cases that would involve only a small fraction of the California and Massachusetts drivers that were part of the proposed class action. That could be the result, she acknowledged, if an appeals court reinstated Uber’s mandatory arbitration clause, which had been thrown out in an earlier ruling by Judge Chen. A few weeks ago Liss-Riordan, after being subjected to criticism over terms of the proposed settlement, including the fact it did not address the core issue of whether Uber drivers should be classified as employees instead of contractors, as well as the payment amount, agreed to reduce by half the share that her firm would receive in the now defunct deal.
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