Of the incalculable amount of money stolen from drivers by Uber and Lyft through various accounting shenanigans, $328m will be paid back to them and their lawyers in a settlement announced earlier this week.
Uber agreed to pay $290 million and Lyft $38 million in what New York Attorney General Letitia James called the largest wage-theft settlement her office has ever secured.
The money will be distributed to cheated drivers who will get back pay along with mandatory paid sick leave and other benefits. Eligible drivers can file a claim to receive the money owed.
Uber deducted sales taxes and other fees from drivers’ pay rather than adding it to customers’ tabs, and lied about it in its terms of service. Lyft did likewise, through the cunning device of applying an “administrative charge” equal to sales tax.
A statement from New York Attorney General Letitia James: “For years, Uber and Lyft systemically cheated their drivers out of hundreds of millions of dollars in pay and benefits while they worked long hours in challenging conditions. These drivers overwhelmingly come from immigrant communities and rely on these jobs to provide for their families. This settlement will ensure they finally get what they have rightfully earned and are owed under the law.”