A U.S. appeals court in January said a fund created by the state of New York to compensate for-hire vehicle drivers who are injured on the job did not break the law by imposing a fee on noncash tips given to drivers, nixing an $8.5 million award for a class action that could include hundreds of thousands of passengers. A unanimous three-judge panel said the state law creating the New York Black Car Operators’ Injury Compensation Fund more than 20 years ago clearly permits it to levy the surcharge and a federal judge was wrong to rule otherwise.

The Black Car Fund stopped imposing the surcharge on noncash tips in February 2021. The current 2.75% fee on fares pays for the drivers’ workers’ compensation and a long list of other benefits.

“The Black Car Fund’s nation-leading model provides workers’ compensation and other benefits at no cost to drivers, which gig workers in other states don’t have, by charging passengers a small amount on each trip,” explained Ira Goldstein, the Fund’s executive director.

Source: Reuters

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