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Oops! Uber Mistakenly Offers to Pay for Drivers' Health Insurance

By Rich Duprey - Jun 11, 2021 at 10:14AM

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The message was intended only for its California drivers.

Just like the guy who hits "reply all" on an email instead of just the one recipient he wants to receive his response, Uber Technologies (UBER 0.71%) accidentally volunteered to help subsidize the healthcare costs for all of its drivers instead of only those in California.

Now it needs to drop a huge load of disappointment on those drivers who thought they were getting financial assistance.

Uber driver and passengers

Image source: Uber Technologies.

Voters in California last November spared Uber, Lyft, and other ridesharing and delivery businesses like DoorDash from having to classify their drivers as employees instead of what they are, independent contractors.

But under the Proposition 22 voter referendum, one of the stipulations is for drivers who average between 15 hours and 25 hours of drive time a week to be offered healthcare subsidies equal to 41% of the average premiums paid under Covered California, the health insurance marketplace created after Obamacare was implemented.

Uber was notifying its California drivers that it was offering them the required financial assistance, but apparently hit the "reply all" button and sent the solicitation to all drivers.

According to tech news website The Verge, under a subject line that read, "It's a great time to get health coverage," a May 26 email from Uber told drivers "Uber can help cover your healthcare costs."

It subsequently sent out a second email lamenting the error, noting, "Unfortunately, we made a mistake sending this email to you, as this policy only applies to drivers and delivery people in California."

Uber says it is dealing on an individual basis with ineligible drivers and delivery people who contact them after receiving the email. 

Rich Duprey has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Uber Technologies. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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Stocks Mentioned

Uber Technologies, Inc. Stock Quote
Uber Technologies, Inc.
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