Uber Canada to shift operations from Netherlands after Ontario class-action lawsuit – National

Uber’s Canadian ride-hailing and grocery delivery businesses are moving from the Netherlands to Canada – a change that will affect the tax bill.

The San Francisco, Calif. Tech giant said the relocation of its Canadian operations would go into effect July 1, forcing Uber to collect sales taxes that will be paid to the government.

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The company said the postponement won’t introduce new fees for most restaurants, drivers, or couriers, but the current fees are subject to GST, PST, and HST, and those who use its Eats Pass subscription program may have one as well Sales tax introduced.

The change will allow restaurants, drivers, and couriers to claim tax credits, and they and other users of the Uber apps will have to sign new agreements with Uber’s new Canadian entities.

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The company has been considering and working to move its Canadian operations out of the Netherlands since 2018 and has already taken similar steps in the Australia-New Zealand and Europe, Middle East and Africa regions.

Uber started thinking about the move after David Heller, the driver of Ontario Uber Eats, filed a class action lawsuit against the company in 2017.

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Heller hoped to get Uber to recognize drivers as employees and give them minimum wages, vacation pay, and other protections under the Employment Standards Act.

Uber fought the case and obtained a suspension because it contained a contractual clause requiring all disputes in the Netherlands, where it was recorded, to go through mediation.

The case reached the Supreme Court of Canada, which sided with drivers in 2020, paving the way for the class action lawsuit to apply for certification.

Uber eventually changed its dispute settlement protocols to allow arbitration in the province or territory a driver resides in, but Samfiru Tumarkin LLP, labor lawyer Samara Belitzky, said Uber’s new agreements still contain some legal clauses that are unsuspecting Could trip drivers.

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Belitzky, who is part of the Samfiru Tumarkin LLP firm that is pursuing the class action lawsuit, said the new contract in which the drivers will be posted requires them to agree not to take class or class actions against Uber – a clause that too was included in their previous agreement.

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Uber would like drivers to agree to resolve their issues through arbitration or on an individual basis instead, but is offering instructions on how to opt out of this clause, Belitzky said.

“The opt-out information is at the very end … and it’s in a lot of legal text that most Uber drivers don’t even see it,” Belitzky said.

“They don’t realize that their rights are being harmed.”

She recommends that anyone who is asked to sign the new agreement read it carefully.

The company, which began making its users aware of the changes on Wednesday, is also providing support hotlines and tax resources for anyone who has questions.

© 2021 The Canadian Press

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