A trade union has won the first stage of its battle with Deliveroo to challenge the employment status of some of its riders.
The High Court will now review an earlier decision by the Central Arbitration Committee, which found that the company’s riders could be classed as self-employed.
Mrs Justice Simler said granted the review on “limited grounds”, dismissing a number of the union’s points but ruling that the right of riders to bargain collectively, as enshrined under the Human Rights Act, should be considered.
A spokesperson for Deliveroo said: “Today’s decision has clearly upheld the central finding of the CAC, which is that Deliveroo riders are self-employed. This is good news for Deliveroo riders who value the ability to choose when and where to work.
“The court has allowed a limited challenge on human rights grounds. Deliveroo has long argued that the self-employed should have access to greater protections, and we welcome any debate on how that can best be achieved.”
Today’s decision came just days after the Supreme Court ruled that plumbing and heating engineer Gary Smith, who had worked for Pimlico Plumbers, should be classed as a “worker”.
The judges had found that the terms of Smith’s contract “betrayed a grip on his economy inconsistent with his being a truly independent contractor”, including the requirement that had a branded uniform and car, in what was later described as a “warning shot” to empoloyers.
Deliveroo added: “The decision was reached having considered the recent judgement of the Supreme Court in the Pimlico Plumbers case, and emphatically rejects the union’s challenge based on this judgment.”