Uber has just granted employee status to its drivers in the UK. A decision that could affect other European countries using the platform and additional insurance for the self-employed.
Once upon a time there was a revolution
How far will this little revolution go from the UK? The digital platform giant, Uber, has just granted employee status to its VTC drivers. A designation that, under UK law, falls between the status of self-employed and that of an employee (” Employee “), but what the right to a Minimum wage and paid holidays. This is a world first for Uber and a major change in its model.
From this Wednesday, March 17th, is the 70,000 Uber drivers from across the channel, will therefore benefit from a minimum wage from 10 euros and 18 cents per hour, a retirement fund that Uber will contribute to, and paying 12% of their usual compensation in the event of a vacation. Social benefits in addition to those already in force: free access to health insurance and compensation for parental leave.
However, the recent advances were not offered, but made after a social and legal struggle. About twenty drivers who worked for the platform quarreled in front of that British Supreme Court that they deserve the status of “Manpower” ((“Worker”under UK law). And on February 19, the court ruled: It recognized the self-employed with this higher status and their right to the social benefits associated with them.
A measure that could be emulated
With this decision, a new era may begin, but another difficult one closes, particularly according to Mary Kay Henry, president of the International Union of Service Employees: “This ends nearly a decade of fearful ridesharing companies like Uber and it’s clear that Uber has the ability to properly register its drivers and pay them a living wage with good performance at all times.”
At the moment, however, Uber has not disclosed how much it will cost to change the status of its drivers, even if the platform could lose a lot more due to legal proceedings that may have been initiated. The VTC application is still financially unprofitable and is considering how it could change the terms of its other workers in other parts of Europe. In France, Uber drivers are still self-employed (Self-employed).
The idea of creating a status between self-employed and employees was also discussed in France in order to better protect the few 200,000 workers (at least) digital platforms. The Covid-19 crisis has indeed made it particularly clear how precarious the delivery staff and drivers are “First of the ropes” on which the activity is based when the rest of the country is restricted.
Insurance solutions are developing in France
Private insurance solutions currently exist and are developing. They remain optional, as a self-employed person is not required to take out collective health insurance negotiated by his company, as is the case, for example, with employees. French micro-entrepreneurs could not benefit either Partial unemployment for one year because they are again reserved for holders of an employment contract.
To meet various requirements on this subject, contact assurtech Indeez a for example recently launched a pension product (Covisure)This enables the self-employed to be insured and compensated in the event of quarantine or hospitalization in connection with Covid-19. However, the question arises: should we continue developing these insurance solutions for the self-employed, or should we rely on a change in their status like in the UK? The months ahead will tell us if the decision made on the canal will shift the lines elsewhere in Europe.
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