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Home News Deliveroo hit with 2nd labour law conviction in France

Deliveroo hit with 2nd labour law conviction in France

Published on 24/06/2022
Published from AFP.com

A French labour court said Friday that it had found meal delivery giant Deliveroo guilty of “undeclared work” for classifying four couriers as independent contractors instead of employees.

It was the latest European court ruling against the British company as countries increasingly uphold the rights of “gig economy” workers, saying they should benefit from labour law protections for employees as well as social security contributions.

One of the four cases involved a rider working after 2017, when Deliveroo was first warned about potential legal violations in a separate case that led to a court fine of 375,000 euros ($395,000) last April, which it has appealed.

The Paris labour court ordered the company to pay the delivery riders nearly 240,000 euros in total, including 128,548 euros to the one for work from February 2016 to April 2019.

Another rider, hired in January 2018, was chosen to represent the company, complete with official Deliveroo uniform, on its website.

“Deliveroo France was perfectly aware of the legal requirements for workers, and the risk that these “fake freelancers” would be later deemed employees,” the labour court said in a ruling dated June 3.

It noted that riders were continuously tracked in real-time with geolocalisation software and that they went through “a genuine recruitment procedure” before being hired.

Riders were also punished in case of late deliveries, the court found, another reason to declare them as contractual employees.

Kevin Mention, a lawyer for the plaintiffs, said a second case was ongoing for workers from 2018 to 2022.

But several other riders have seen their demands to be qualified as employees rejected by courts, and Deliveroo says it has updated its contracts to respect French labour laws.

“Six times now, civil jurisdictions have ruled in favour of Deliveroo, recognising that its delivery partners were independent contractors in no way subject to permanent legal subordination,” the company said in a statement after the ruling.

It said it would appeal the ruling with the Paris appeals court.

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