10th January 2017
A legal firm Leigh Day is talking to Deliveroo delivery riders about a “potential legal action” against the food delivery firm, attacking its current business model as “absurd”. Deliveroo deems its delivery staff to be “self-employed”, but solicitors Leigh Day suggests they should be entitled to further rights like a minimum wage and holiday pay. The law firm is asking any riders interested in a potential claim to get in touch. Deliveroo has a market valuation of £1bn following a $275 million (£226 million) funding round in August 2016 and provides a delivery service for restaurants in more than 100 cities in 12 countries around the world. In late 2016, Leigh Day won a major legal battle against Uber, the Californian ride-hailing company, when a London employment tribunal ruled that its drivers should be classified as “workers” and entitled to additional benefits. Uber has appealed the ruling.
Leigh Day employment lawyer Annie Powell said: “The idea that Deliveroo riders are self-employed contractors in business on their own account and that Deliveroo is a customer of each rider’s business is absurd. Deliveroo riders carry out the sole function of Deliveroo – to deliver food and drink from restaurants to customers – and are tightly controlled by Deliveroo in what is clearly a dependent work relationship. We will argue that Deliveroo has no reasonable grounds to argue that its riders are self-employed contractors and that it should immediately ensure that its riders are paid at least the National Minimum Wage and receive paid holiday.”
In response Deliveroo said: “Deliveroo has a strong relationship with our riders and we are proud to offer them the flexible work they value. On average riders earn substantially more than the National Living Wage and over 10,000 people apply to ride with us each week, which shows that working with Deliveroo is popular and valued by riders right across the country. We are proud to be a growing British tech company, and we will always work closely with riders so that we can continue to offer great work with the highest levels of safety and service.”