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Uber respond to ADCU Dutch court ruling claiming "the correct procedure was not followed"

Updated: Apr 15, 2021

Uber has responded to a Dutch court ruling which ordered them to reinstate drivers who were “unlawfully dismissed” by algorithmic means, saying they will be contesting the decision based on the correct procedure “not being followed”.

Speaking with TaxiPoint, a spokesperson for Uber said the judgment was automatic and handed down by default in their absence. It has been stressed that Uber were not aware of the case until last week when the App Drivers & Couriers Union (ADCU) started briefing it to the media.

According to sources, Uber have not yet had a chance to present their defence to the claims made against them in the case, meaning that the facts of this judgment were not considered by the Court. It is claimed that the ADCU waited 50 days before publicising it, as the default judgment was handed down on 24 February.

Uber is now making an application to set aside the judgment and have their case heard on the basis that the correct procedure was not followed. This will take place within four weeks of Uber BV being made aware of the judgment for the first time, which was 8 April.

Uber will argue that under the Dutch Code of Civil Procedure ("DCCP"), the opposing counsel failed to issue the judgment to a board member of Uber BV in person. This is a specific requirement for default rulings to ensure that the defendants are made aware.

Uber are likely to defend themselves in the same way they did in the 11 March case, in that their systems have meaningful human intervention for fraud deactivations. In its judgment of 11 March, the same court comprehensively ruled in Uber’s favour on this matter, arguing that the human review involved in the cases of fraudulent behaviour was meaningful.

Following the 11 March decision, a spokesperson for the ride-hailing app, said: “The Court has confirmed Uber’s dispatch system does not equate to automated decision making, and that we provided drivers with the data they are entitled to. The Court also confirmed that Uber’s processes have meaningful human involvement. Safety is the number one priority on the Uber platform, so any account deactivation decision is taken extremely seriously with manual reviews by our specialist team."

Today (14 April) following the Dutch court's latest ruling, an Uber Spokesperson said: “Uber only became aware of this default judgement last week, due to representatives for the ADCU not following proper legal procedure. With no knowledge of the case, the Court handed down a default judgement in our absence, which was automatic and not considered. Only weeks later, the very same Court found comprehensively in Uber’s favour on similar issues in a separate case. We will now contest this judgement.”


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