RSG027: An Interview With Shannon Liss-Riordan About The Uber Employee Misclassification Lawsuit

There’s been a lot of talk over the Uber employee lawsuit the last couple months and drivers tend to have very strong opinions on the matter.  On today’s podcast, I wanted to bring on someone who could really break down the case for us and explain all the nuances of the law so that drivers understand exactly what’s going on.

This issue may take a while to be decided in the courts but it will have a huge impact on companies like Uber and the rest of the on demand economy.  I encourage you to listen all the way to the end too since I’ll give my personal thoughts on whether drivers are better suited as employees or independent contractors after the interview is over.

If you’d like to read a transcript of this podcast, please click here.hiking up mp peru


  • Back from my trip to Peru!
  • While I was gone, I got some serious traffic – thank you!
  • Christian’s article on Uber drive deactivations
  • Today’s post will focus on some of the lawsuits involving Uber
  • Interview with Shannon Liss-Riordan, the lawyer handling Uber lawsuits
  • Thanks to everyone who listened to my last podcast, making money with your blog
  • Want to support RSG? Check out our partner, Stride Health – a great company for independent contractors looking for health care

Interview with Shannon Liss-Riordan

  • Shannon Liss-Riordan, labor and employment attorney
  • Represents workers, with a focus on independent contractors and tipped employees
  • Represents workers, not companies
  • Best way to get in contact is through for latest information, and email if you have questions

Current Uber Lawsuit

Class Action Ruling

  • Current lawsuit is seeking reimbursement for drivers’ expenses and classification as employees
  • Federal court granted class action status, but certain drivers are excluded from the class
  • Doesn’t mean they can’t participate, but they would need to contact Shannon to be added
  • Arbitration clause in Uber contracts with drivers to prevent them from being a part of a class action
  • Litigation involving whether or not that clause is enforceable
  • Possibility for appeal to include more people – visit for more information

What This Could Mean for You

  • Right now, the lawsuit is focused in California
  • Drivers in other states should pay attention to what is going on in California
  • Can’t predict how long this case will last, or what the result could be
  • Class action lawsuit created so people don’t have to use their names, for fear of retaliation and being deactivated
  • So far, have not heard of Uber deactivating any drivers involved in the lawsuit

If Uber Loses this Lawsuit, What Changes?

  • Drivers would be entitled to employee protections
  • Could include: guarantee of minimum wage, overtime if you drive 40+ hours, unemployment and workers’ compensation eligibility
  • Not challenging the flexibility of your work time
  • For drivers who want to remain as independent contractors, those who are getting beyond the minimum wage right now will be fine
  • Those who aren’t making minimum wage should see their profits increase
  • Both should see reimbursement for car and business expenses


  • Main goal of this podcast was to get an update on the current lawsuit and how it could affect drivers
  • If you want to be a part of the lawsuit, now you know who to contact
  • Hopefully this helped answer some of your questions and maybe alleviate some of your worries about the lawsuit and Uber’s relationship with drivers
  • If Uber loses this lawsuit, they will have to make changes to their business model, which would benefit drivers
  • Look at how Uber recently handled drivers using Vugo
  • This lawsuit should encourage you to think long-term: if you expect things to stay the same, you’ll be disappointed
  • Have suggestions for who you’d like to see on this podcast? Send me an email!
  • Check out the full transcript here
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Show Notes

Stride Health

This episode was sponsored by Stride Health, they’re a company that connects self employed workers with health coverage and health care for free! And even if you already have health insurance, once you sign up, you’ll get access to a personal advisor who you can call to get help with all your health care decisions and more.  Sign up here to get free access today!

If you’d like to read a transcript of this podcast, please click here