30th March, 2023

Employment status in the EAT: One man-two guvnors? Is a taxi-driver ever self-employed?

Louise acted pro bono via Advocate for a taxi owner who had been found to be the employer of the driver who rented his taxi in the EAT before HHJ Auerbach. The Claimant has also been found to be a worker of a taxi firm in respect of the same work. The Appellant was a shareholder in a private hire firm and was able to access their work through an App. He rented the vehicle to the Claimant and charged a 50% profit share for use. The Claimant was only able to work for the taxi firm by driving the vehicle of a shareholder.

The appeal raised interesting arguments as to whether an employer or worker can ever have two masters or not? Whether the contract was a contract for hire or for services? The significance of working as a hackney carriage as well as private hire in light of Uber v Aslam and Johnson v Transopco. Whether it can ever be necessary to imply a contract with an end user in light of James v Greenwich Borough Council. Judgment is pending.


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