Customers of ride-sharing programs in Washington will see higher fares starting next year.
The fare increase will help raise wages for Washington rideshare drivers for ride-hailing companies, such as those of Uber Technologies and Lyft. The increases are the result of state legislative action earlier this year that codified drivers as independent contractors.
House Bill 2076 also established new rights and protections, including minimum per-mile and per-minute rates, paid sick leave, and workers’ compensation coverage.
Bloomberg Law reported in March that the new law “reflects a compromise between ride-sharing companies, drivers and the Teamsters-affiliated drivers’ union — ensuring companies can classify drivers as independent contractors while requiring them to provide benefits traditionally reserved for employees.”
The state Department of Labor and Industries is responsible for enforcing the new requirements.
According to L&I, “On September 30 of each year, L&I will adjust these rates to reflect the rate of inflation.”
L&I recently released its final inflation-adjusted pay rates for drivers in 2023. In Seattle, those rates will be $1.50 per mile and 64 cents per minute, while Tacoma and the rest of the State will see $1.27 per mile and 37 cents per minute.
The drivers’ union was selected this month by L&I to manage the Driver Resource Center. The center builds on the work the union has undertaken at the Seattle Drivers Resolution Center, expanding support services statewide.
In Tacoma, the union said this week, “The new rates will mean 53% more pay per mile driven and a 279% increase for every minute driven.”
The new rates come into effect on January 1. More information is available online at The L&I website.