The plaintiff firm has released a statement, explaining that its class action against the ride share service has been expanded with the Victorian Supreme Court claim to now also include taxi and hire car drivers, operators and licence owners in Queensland, NSW and Western Australia.
“The expansion to states outside of Victoria will mean thousands more who had their livelihoods drastically impacted by Uber’s allegedly illegal operation will now be able to seek redress, with the total claim likely to dwarf any previous class action recovery in Australia’s history, if successful," the statement said.
Commenting further, Maurice Blackburn senior associate Elizabeth O’Shea said “there were no out of pocket costs or liability risk for registrants, with the case costs being underwritten by a third party litigation funder”.
“Uber sells a notion that it’s just here to do things differently, but in reality and as we will allege, different has meant operating unlawfully and that has caused extensive loss and damage to law-abiding taxi and hire car operators and licence holders across the country,” Ms O’Shea said.
“It was Uber that came in and exploited people by operating outside of regulations, it was Uber’s conduct that led to decimating losses suffered by our group members and for those reasons it is the multibillion dollar company Uber and its associated entities that we are targeting in order to provide redress to those affected."
Ms O’Shea added that the class action is likely to be one of Australia’s largest, given the number of people involved, the potential recovery of compensation and the fight the firm anticipates from the defendants.
“We have a proud history of running the nation’s largest and toughest class actions and we believe that this is the best mechanism to pursue some meaningful form of justice and compensation for those who have had their lives turned upside down by Uber’s alleged illegal operation in Victoria, NSW, Qld and WA,” she concluded.