Uber will pay $2.2 million to settle claims it overcharged riders with disabilities

Uber settles a Justice Department lawsuit accusing the company of overcharging passengers with disabilities. The ridesharing company has agreed to pay at least $2.2 million to passengers who were charged wait-time fees despite disabilities that required more time to board a vehicle. The payout includes nearly $1.74 million for over 1,000 drivers who have complained about the charges and $500,000 for “other injured individuals.” Uber will also offer credits to more than 65,000 people who have received wait time fee waivers, all of whom will receive double the wait time fee they were charged.

Uber introduced wait-time fees in 2016 when it began charging customers additional fees if a driver waited more than two minutes after arriving at a pickup location. As a result, people with disabilities had to pay more than other passengers. The Justice Department claimed this violated Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act, which prohibits discrimination by carriers.

In a statement to Engadget, Uber said it was “delighted” with the agreement and claimed that it was “always working on” improving accessibility for users. It encouraged customers to sign up for the waivers.

Under the agreement, Uber will offer the waiver to all eligible riders for two years. Refunds are also “readily available” for drivers without a waiver, the Justice Department added. Uber has promised to promote the waiver system that will be introduced in 2021.

This agreement is unlikely to satisfy some critics. It releases Uber from future claims related to waiting fees. The company has also faced multiple lawsuits over a shortage of wheelchair-accessible vehicles mandated by the ADA — the agreement does not address those concerns. Still, this can be a win for drivers who, because of their disability, had no choice but to pay a premium.

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https://www.engadget.com/uber-rider-disability-lawsuit-settlement-212009968.html?src=rss Uber will pay $2.2 million to settle claims it overcharged riders with disabilities

Russell Falcon

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