A number of cases relating to the gig economy and employment status have made headlines recently starting with the news that Deliveroo have settled claims made by 50 couriers relating to their rights as workers. It is reported that a six figure pay out is to be shared between the claimants. The settlement is on a without admission of liability basis (so Deliveroo do not accept the couriers are in fact workers) and the company has said the settlement has no impact on Deliveroo riders or their business model.
The Deliveroo settlement comes at the same time as news that the Independent Workers Union of Great Britain (IWGB) has been granted the right to seek a judicial review of the Central Arbitration Committee decision that Deliveroo riders were not workers for the purposes of an application made by IWGB for statutory union recognition. The case is likely to be heard next year.
Sticking with couriers, Hermes have been on the losing end of a preliminary hearing dealing with the employment status of a number of current and former couriers who were found to be workers. The GMB union, which helped bring the claim, has said the ruling is likely to effect 14,500 Hermes couriers who are engaged under the same contract as the claimants. Meanwhile, a Hermes spokesperson said they are "likely to appeal" the decision.
And finally, art educators alleging that they have been sacked by the National Gallery after decades of service are bringing their cases to employment tribunal. They face the more difficult task of persuading the tribunal that they are employees with rights to bring unfair dismissal claims rather than freelancers or workers. A preliminary hearing to assess status was due to take place in mid July.