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In what direction will Uber drive SA labour laws?

Author: Imraan Mahomed - Practice Area Lead, Employment/Labour Law

The recent CCMA ruling in favour of Uber drivers now heads to the Labour Court. This is an extremely important case as South African labour laws for the first time now come "head-to-bot" with the fourth industrial revolution.

We are obviously not unique as these issues have arisen in other jurisdictions. In late 2016 for instance, inAslam and Others v Uber BV and Others, the London Central Employment Tribunal held that drivers engaged by Uber were not self-employed contractors and fell within the legal definition of “worker” under local UK legislation. 

Uber is a modern business phenomenon having to navigate in a highly regulated SA employment environment. 

Will 4IR call for more or less employee protection in the SA market?

No App for this, yet – just old fashioned legal analysis by the Labour Court.

It's time for our legislature to pick up a GPS to signal where to from here.  

Until then, the debate will go on and so will uncertainty in a fast changing business environment on an important business consideration – the rights of the contractor…or employee…or bot...


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