Bloomberg Law
March 2, 2020, 10:16 AM

Uber, Lyft Talk Responsibility on Assaults but Deny in Court

Erin Mulvaney
Erin Mulvaney

Uber Technologies Inc. and Lyft Inc., confronted by a growing number of people who say they were assaulted or harassed while using the ride-hailing platforms, have touted their commitment to keeping passengers safe by enacting new screening protocols and releasing data on incidents.

But in defending dozens of civil lawsuits in court, the companies can claim they’re not responsible for criminal incidents “outside the scope of the employment relationship,” in part because they consider their drivers independent contractors. That distinction is part of the complex balancing test used in cases involving employer liability for negligence and other civil claims.

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