The Forum has a long Featured Thread by grams777, that's become somewhat unwieldy for Drivers to glean pertinent info from. New US Uber Partner Agreement - Dec 11, 2015 (Arbitration) So I've compiled this post as a repository of concise & narrowly focused info on the New Partner Agreement (PA), it's Binding Arbitration Provision (BAP), Opting Out of BAP & on #UberLAWSUIT. The companion Poll is being run as an Ongoing Poll to gauge sentiment on Opting Out amongst future New Forum Members. On Wednesday 12/09/15, San Francisco Federal Court Judge Chen issued Two Rulings in California Drivers' lawsuit against Uber on worker classification & tips: The Judge ruled that the Binding Arbitration Provisions (BAP) of Uber's June 2014 and November 2014 Partnership Agreements (PA) were unenforceable. The Judge also ruled that the Drivers can pursue reimbursement for Vehicle Expenses, which he'd previously excluded. On Friday 12/11/15 Uber sent to All of it's 400,000 U.S. Drivers a New Partnership Agreement (PA) with: Updated Binding Arbitration Provision (BAP). Updated Terms & Conditions of other aspects of Drivers' contract with Uber. Drivers have to Accept the New Partnership Agreement (PA) in order to be able to login to the Partner App and work. After Drivers have Accepted the full PA, Drivers have the Legal Right to Opt-out of The Binding Arbitration Provision (BAP) of the New PA. Drivers have 30 Days, from the date they accept the New PA, to Opt-out of the BAP. Drivers can Opt-out by emailing Uber's General Counsel at Optout@Uber.com. For your records, CC the Opt-out email to yourself, as you will not receive a reply back from Uber. This is a sample Opt-out email: To: Optout@uber.com CC: (Your email address) Subject: Opting Out of Binding Arbitration Provision Date: (Today's Date) I, (Your Name), hereby notify Uber & Rasier LLC of my intent to Opt-out of The Binding Arbitration Provision of Rasier Technologies Services Agreement. I have from here onwards elected to Opt Out of the Binding Arbitration Provision of the Partner Agreement. Your Name Your Phone Number Your Postal Address (Optional) Some Questions & Answers on PA & BAP Q: Why should I Opt-out of the BAP? Opting Out of the BAP preserves a Driver's Right to pursue resolution of any dispute with Uber in a Court of Law. A Driver who has not Opted Out cannot even file a Small Claims Court case against Uber. A Driver can join any current or future Class Action Lawsuit against Uber, if he/she is eligible. A Driver who has Opted Out of BAP, can still resolve a dispute with Uber by Arbitration, if he/she so chooses. Read more about Uber's Arbitration here: Binding Arbitration | Here’s Uber’s Plan To Screw Over Drivers Who Have A Complaint Opting Out of the BAP is literally the only decision that a Driver has absolute control over in his/her relationship with Uber. Besides the choice of what hours a Driver chooses to work, Uber can & does exercise unilateral control over All aspects of a Driver operations. Q: By Opting Out, am I joining the Class Action #UberLAWSUIT against Uber? NO! Opting Out has absolutely nothing to do with #UberLAWSUIT. Till now the #UberLAWSUIT is limited to California Drivers only. CA Drivers have to make a separate decision on whether to join or not join the Class. Drivers' Atty. Shannon Lis-Riordan (SLR) has stated that she intends to file cases to pursue claims of Drivers in other States. Q: If I Opt-out, will/can Uber retaliate against me by Deactivating me? A Driver's Opt-out email goes to Uber's General Counsel, who is an Officer of the Court. A Driver's Opt-out Status is Not shared with local Uber Operations Teams. There are many Well Known Forum Members who Opted Out in Nov 2014 and are still Active Drivers. Q: Besides the Updated BAP, what else has been updated in the New PA? I haven't yet compared in detail the Old PA with the New PA. This is a screenshot from the 1st page of a 43 pages-long Microsoft Word comparison between the Old Nov 10, 2014 & the New Dec 10, 2015 PAs. The Underlined Text in Red is new addition to the New Dec 2015 PA. The Strike Through Text in Red was present in the old Nov 2014 PA, but is deleted in the New Dec 2015 PA. 43 Page Comparison pdf (588KB): https://www.dropbox.com/s/q1fhqntuv759k67/PA Comparison.pdf?dl=0 Some Questions & Answers on #UberLAWSUIT Q: What is the #UberLAWSUIT filed by Drivers about? The Lawsuit is about how Drivers, while being classified as ICs, have No Control over their IC operation, except the hours they choose to drive (Flexibility). Yet Uber exercises unilateral & excessive control over the daily routine operations of it's IC Drivers, in essence treating them as Employees, but without any of the benefits. The Lawsuit was originally filed on behalf of all U.S. Drivers, but Judge Chen has so far limited it to California Drivers only. That Uber illegally represented to Riders that Gratuities (Tips) were included in the Fare. Q: If Drivers win the Lawsuit, will I be forced to become an Employee? NO! “Even if Uber loses this case, it will be free to restructure its relationship with its drivers in such a way that the drivers would actually be bona fide independent contractors,” Chen wrote in a 68-page decision. Analysis: Uber will survive, no matter what courts decide Q: But what about the flexibility that I enjoy as a Driver? Despite Uber’s Arguments, Flexibility for Employees Is a Company’s Choice Q: What would an average Driver win in a judgment award? Drivers' Vehicle related expenses would be the biggest chunk of any judgement award. The Judge has accepted the IRS mileage reimbursement rate of¢57.5 per Mile as a reasonable figure. Based on survey data from SherpaShare, the average Uber driver, full-time and part-time, puts in nearly 24 hours a week.The average speed in cities around the country where Uber is most used appears to be around 20 miles per hour. That means the average Uber driver covers about 475 miles a week. That calculates to an average of $273.13 a week, or just over $13,000 a year per driver. A few final thoughts: In Nov 2014, Uber took away Drivers' Right to Opt-out of BAP whenever Uber modified the PA by adding wording to the Modification Clause in the Nov 2014 PA. This wording was not present in June 2014 PA. (The wording is also present in Dec 2015 PA.) Ever since the addition of this wording, I have been a strong advocate for New Drivers to read their PA, and Opt-out of the BAP within the 30 Day window. Now, thanks to Judge Chen, ALL Drivers have been given a second chance to Opt-out of The Binding Arbitration Provision, and gain a measure of equity in their relationship with Uber. Please ask questions on anything that I've posted above or overlooked to post on. Thank you!