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Uber Loses U.K. Ruling, Entitling Drivers to Minimum Wage

  • Two Uber drivers sued company in London over pay, treatment
  • Judges invoke Shakespeare to criticize Uber’s arguments
A user scans for an available vehicle using the Uber Technologies Inc.'s app on an Apple Inc. iPhone 6 smartphone in this arranged photograph in London, U.K., on Thursday, May 14, 2015.
Photographer: Simon Dawson/Bloomberg
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Uber Technologies Inc. lost a lawsuit over pay and vacation time for U.K. drivers at the car-sharing service in a ruling that could change how workers are treated in the country’s burgeoning gig economy.

Three London tribunal judges turned to “Hamlet” as they criticized Uber for "grimly" sticking to “faintly ridiculous" arguments that it is an application provider rather than a taxi service. The case, brought by two Uber cabbies, is the first against the company in Britain and could have ramifications for more than 40,000 people in the U.K.