An Australian court ruled that the ride-sharing app had violated laws by misleading users about fares. The court has imposed a fine of 14 million US dollars on Uber Technologies for this.
An Australian court ruled that the ride-sharing app had violated laws by misleading users about fares. The court has imposed a fine of 14 million US dollars on Uber Technologies for this. According to an Australian court, the ride-sharing app violated consumer laws by misleading users about fares.
An Australian court on Wednesday fined US ride-sharing app Uber Technologies A$21 million (US$14 million) for charging users higher fares for certain trips and threatening cancellation fees if they don’t pay. done. However, the country’s competition watchdog had requested a higher fine.
In its ruling, the Federal Court said that the Australian company of US ride-sharing app Uber had breached Australian consumer law by misleading consumers. According to the court, Uber threatened to charge certain customers for canceling trips between 2017 and 2021 and charged higher fares by August 2020 using faulty software.
Apology from Uber
Uber said in a statement on its website that it apologized to the Australian public for the error and that “we have made appropriate adjustments to our platform following the complaints you have made.”
Judge Michael Huff O’Brien said in his written ruling that “by providing false information on its smartphone app, Uber likely intended to induce a large number of customers to change their decision about canceling a trip.” And they will refrain from canceling rides in future.”
The case against Uber was filed by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC). Although Uber agreed to pay US$17.39 million, O’Brien told the court that the evidence provided by the parties was “insufficient”. Due to which they had to speculate about the losses to the consumers.
The evidence that was presented showed that less than 0.5 percent of Uber users used its services because of concerns about cancellation fees. The judge said Uber Taxi’s software displayed fares 89 percent higher than actual fares, but less than 1 percent of Uber’s total users used them.
ACCC chairperson Gina Kass Gottlieb said in a statement that the fine is a clear signal to companies that mislead consumers that the cost of a product or service is a serious matter and those who mislead will be prosecuted. There may be a heavy price to pay for this.”
He added that the federal judge had also made it clear that the imposition of a lower penalty should not mislead anyone into thinking that the court could be any less lenient towards a violator of Australian consumer law.
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