Lyft must play by the same rules as everyone else in New Jersey.
Under New Jersey law, an employer must reimburse its employees when they pay for business expenses in carrying our their job duties. For people who drive a vehicle, these expenses include: fuel, tolls, car payments, or insurance as part of your job, your employment must reimburse you for those expenses.
Employees may also be entitled to the NJ minimum wage ($12/hour in 2021) and overtime when they work more than 40 hours in a week.
Lyft apparently thinks it has outsmarted the law. They claim that their drivers are “independent contractors” running an independent business. Not so fast. Lyft drivers are entitled to the same rights as other employees.
That is because the determination of whether one is an employee or ‘independent contractor is not based on any label used in an employment agreement.
While Lyft may claim its drivers are independent contractors, the law says otherwise. You are legally an employee, and entitled to the benefits stated above, unless, among other requirements, you perform work that is outside the usual course of the hiring entity’s business.
Lyft provides transportation to its customers. If you are perform the driving services for Lyft customers, you likely are an employee and may be entitled to unpaid wages and unreimbursed expenses that you have been denied.
Our firm is leading the way in protecting drivers. We currently represent Uber drivers in a putative class action filed in the District of New Jersey seeking to recover unpaid business expenses (car payments, fuel, tolls, insurance) and seeking overtime for Uber drivers in New Jersey. Uber attempted to have the case thrown out of court and litigated in a private, closed door arbitration pursuant to an arbitration agreement. In a precedential opinion issued in September of 2019, the Third Circuit Court of Appeals sided with the Uber drivers, and held that they may be transportation workers and thus exempt from arbitration. In short: drivers will get their day in court.
If you have driven for Lyft in New Jersey and are interested in a free/confidential legal consultation to understand your rights, please fill out the form below. You may be owed wages. Additionally, under the law, you may be entitled to additional money beyond your lost wages. Call us today or complete the form below and we will reach out to you promptly to provide you a free and confidential consultation.
If you decide during the consultation you would like to move forward, there are no upfront costs or fees. Our firm accepts these types of cases on a fully contingent basis and only will seek to recover fees and costs out a recovery. If there is no recovery or judgment in your favor, Swartz Swidler, LLC will not seek any fee or cost from you.
Submit Your Information for a Free and Confidential Consultation. You may also call us at 856-685-7420.