New setback for Uber. France had every right to ban in 2015 the transport service between individuals UberPop of the american giant of the VTC (vehicle of transport with driver) Uber, without prior notice to the draft law to the european Commission, said the attorney general in an opinion published Tuesday.
“Member States may prohibit and punish the illegal exercise of an activity of transport such as UberPop without having to notify in advance the draft law to the Commission,” announced the general counsel in a press release.
Business transport and non-technology
And for good reason. According to the advocate general, the u.s. company falls under the transportation sector, while Uber has always claimed a status of a technology company, and a status of “technological platform”. If that was the case, France would have had to notify the draft law Thévenoud to the european Commission, before prohibiting the transport services between individuals for consideration of eu law, prevailing over the French law on the matter. But the advocate general considers that this is not the case. And in general, the Court of justice of the EU following its opinion.
For Uber, this is a setback in the numerous legal proceedings against the government or to the traditional societies of taxi who accuse it of unfair competition.
This advice in particular, in response to a first decision made on 11 may by the same attorney general, regarding a dispute between the california corporation and the Spanish State. Originally presented as a car pool service, UberPop was in fact a service offered transport, but with drivers not professionals. An activity now prohibited by the laws of Thévenoud, and Grandguillaume.
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For this, Uber France was sentenced in June 2016 to pay a fine of 800,000 euros, half of which suspended for having “incited a very large number of people to engage in an activity that has led to convictions”. Earlier, the company had been the subject of a first conviction in December 2015 for “misleading commercial practices” after presenting UberPop as a car pool.
Still, despite the ban on UberPop, the company is still disputed by the taxi drivers who see it as unfair competition.
In addition, Uber through a bad patch after the resignation of its director-general, there are a dozen of days. Travis Kalanick, co-founder of the start-up has had to leave its place because of its methods of management and while the company is still not profitable.