Home Business Uber agrees $178m payout to Australia taxi drivers

Uber agrees $178m payout to Australia taxi drivers

Uber has agreed to pay A$271.8m ($178.3m; £140m) to settle a lawsuit in Australia, according to a law firm for taxi operators and drivers.

Maurice Blackburn Lawyers filed the class action on behalf of over 8,000 taxi and hire car owners and drivers.

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The case alleged they lost income when the the ride-hailing giant “aggressively” moved into the country.

“Uber fought tooth and nail at every point along the way,” the law firm said.

“Since 2018, Uber has made significant contributions into various state-level taxi compensation schemes, and with today’s proposed settlement, we put these legacy issues firmly in our past,” Uber said in a statement.

The company did not disclose the size of the proposed settlement.

“It would be inappropriate to comment on specifics until the agreement is finalised and the settlement is disclosed to the court,” it said.

The class action was filed against Uber in 2019 in the Supreme Court of Australia’s Victoria state.

“This case succeeded where so many others have failed. In Victoria, Queensland and Western Australia, cases were brought against governments and all of them failed,” Maurice Blackburn principal lawyer Michael Donelly said.

“What our group members asked for was not another set of excuses – but an outcome – and today we have delivered it for them,” he added.

Before any pay out can be made the court still needs to approve the proposed settlement as being in the best interests of group members.

San Francisco-based Uber, which was founded in 2009, operates in around 70 countries and more than 10,000 cities globally.

Over the years, it has faced protests by taxi drivers in cities around the world.

In December 2023, the company won a lawsuit brought against it by 2,500 taxi drivers in France.

A Paris commercial court ruled that Uber had not committed acts of unfair competition.

The taxi drivers had been seeking €455m ($495.4m; £389m).

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