To what end will these Court decisions take us?
To the drivers these cases are seen as the fix that cures all of the Uber/Lyft vs. driver woes. But, this is not the case. Were we to be determined Employees, a whole new set of rules and such will be imposed on the drivers that they may not be willing to comply with. Things like the flexible schedule and freedom to take a day off anytime you want are perks of being an Independent Contractor. But, a real paycheck of at least minimum wage would sure feel nice to the many drivers that have been working for pennies during the past few months.
The problem stems from Uber and Lyft not treating their drivers as Independent Contractors. An Independent Contractor is a business and those that are working as Independent Contractors do not seem to realize that they are now in business for themselves. To run your own business, you need to make enough money to run your business as a business. And this is where Uber and Lyft have failed. Both Uber and Lyft, in their race to the bottom have forgotten that their Independent Contractors have to make enough money to be their Independent Contractors. If you are not paying your Independent Contractor enough to be your Independent Contractor, then you are a crook or he is your employee. That’s the rule the I.R.S. and the Courts should work from.
As an employee, you get your wage and any benefits that come with the job. Your employer pays a portion of your taxes and other required deductions such as social security and workman’s comp insurance. As an Independent Contractor, your contracted compensation has to be of an amount not only to pay yourself as an employee and your expenses in doing the job,but also has to include a profit for your company.
Let’s use construction contractors for an example. A primary contractor wins the bid to build a new store. This means he has accepted responsibility to build the whole store. But, he doesn’t do flooring. So he sub-contracts the flooring to a different contractor. Both contractors are required to hold similar license and insurance. The Prime Contractor has to pay the Sub-Contractor enough money for the Sub to pay his cost, expense, and wages . . . plus a profit margin for the company. This really is not rocket science and it is not to difficult to understand until you get an employer that does not want you to be a business, but want to claim you are in business for yourself.
Where drivers are failing to respond to the matter, is by forgetting that they are in business to make money. What good is driving for a living if you don’t make enough to replace your car after a few years? If Uber and Lyft want Independent Contractors to do their driving, they have to recognize that IC’s are just as much a business as they are and pay them accordingly. The other thing that IC’s need to realize is that a $10.00 per hour employee actually costs the employer around $25.00 per hour and paying your IC should cost close to that amount.
Ride-Hail Drivers will never get a fair shake so long as they remain unorganized and unrepresented. Join the US RIDE-HAIL DRIVER’S ASSOCIATION and lets unify our voices for the future.