27 May 2020

Delivery workers are considered as independent contractors on his account, determined by the ECJ

The European Court of Justice (ECJ) classifies, at the end of the last week, the delivery person as an independent contractor on his account, and therefore he should not be classified as an employee.

The European Court of Justice's judicial thrashing of the 'riders'. In an order dated 22 April, the EU court answers a question raised a year earlier by the Labour Court in Watford (UK), as to whether there was an employment relationship between the delivery company and companies such as Deliveroo. The decision of the ECJ is clear: There is no employment relationship between a rider and the platform for which he is working.

The judges argue their decision based on reasons such as the company's power to appoint subcontractors or substitutes for all or part of the services, the right of the riders not to accept all the tasks assigned to them and their ability to work for other companies, including competitors. However, this court leaves it to the jurisdiction of each country to apply this concept of worker.

In addition, the judgment refers to the working time set for these workers. "While it is true that the service must be provided at specific time slots, it is no less true that such a requirement is inherent in the very nature of that service," explains the ECJ.

”The essential feature of an employment relationship is that for a certain period of time a person performs services for and under the direction of another person in return for which he receives remuneration”, determined by the judges. 

“That is the case of a person who, although hired as an independent service provider under national law, for tax, administrative or organizational reasons, acts under the direction of his employer as regards, in particular, his freedom to choose the time, place and content of his work, does not share in the employer’s commercial risks and, for the duration of that relationship, forms an integral part of that employer’s undertaking, so forming an economic unit with that undertaking”.

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