Who should be in charge of regulating Uber?

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Do new technology-based companies fit under the existing regulatory framework governing businesses or are new rules required? If new rules are needed, what might they be? Who should be in charge of regulating Uber? 

Technology based companies such as Uber and Airbnb are often seen for disrupting the regulatory framework which are meant for governing the business. The existing laws and regulations for different business are designed by keeping in mind about specific technology as well as specific expectation of economy. In contrary, these technology based companies which are involved in sharing economy as well as managing entrepreneurship using internet are also known to be involved in challenging the existing regulatory structure; and proves to be unfit for it. In the given case study, it is evidenced that the sharing economy using technological platforms do not fit in the current policy and regulation and create policy disruption (Geradin, 2015). Therefore, it is important that new rules should be designed according to the organisational structure and implemented in routine activities of such companies. For example, the taxi drivers of Paris protested in streets against Uber for not following the rules and regulation of transportation business in 2015. Similarly, in London Uber was paying less to its drivers which was against the minimum wage policy in the transportation industry, in the year 2016. These incidences provoked the drivers to protest against the company. As a result of these irregularities, eventually the service of Uber in London was discontinued. In addition to this, the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) crashed down on the drivers of Uber to pay the national business tax for each of their ride since 2015. According to ATO Uber drivers are considered as taxi drivers who should pay taxes - Goods and Service Tax (GST) on each ride, mention their income tax return and maintain business activity statements (Rauch & Schleicher 2015). In this regard the banks really required their account name and numbers, amount and date of payment, BSBs for ensuring that the tax payers are abided by the taxation regulations (Rauch & Schleicher 2015). As a new tax regulation for the technology-based model of Uber, the Australian tax office has imposed 1999 law on it. According to another incident in San Francisco, Uber driver has killed a six year old girl and injured her sister and younger brother at the green light in the year 2014. The victim's family had charged the driver with the gross negligence and vehicular manslaughter (Bay City News, 2014). The driver states that he was using ride-hailing service of Uber app for directing him towards the next passenger. The app made him distracted we just considered as the substantial factor for the accident. The "application" thus violates the law of California vehicle code 23123, since a person should not drive while using a mobile phone in hand. However, Uber states that it is not responsible for any kind of such incident, since the driver is not an employee rather a freelancer. Uber insist its drivers to purchase their own commercial car insurance with an additional $1 million incidents for the driver. Similarly, a 2014 report suggests that approximately 72% of private units provided on Airbnb New York City are found to be illegal under the local and state zoning laws (Posen, 2015). 

Uber in its first few years, operated under the local law enforcement agency which regulates the cab service. It avoided the airport charges, permit fees and taxes, which later on resulted in the form of complaints from airport authority. However recently Uber has started negotiate with the regulatory frameworks and fee structure of the local government. Airports of San Francisco and Washington DC provides a reduced fee of $4 for Uber drivers to pick up passengers. In Chicago the government has already levied tax of 52 % a ride on each ride of Uber (Rauch & Schleicher, 2015). Moreover, Nevada also legalized Uber service and charged 3 % of excise duty per ride, which is expected to rise by $100 million within two years. In addition of inclusion of these recent laws, government should also emphasize on passing a law which would require Uber to hire driver with chauffeur licenses along with their fingerprint background checks. In order to maintain fair business competition with other taxi operators, the Uber driver, should also pay 10 % GST. Global law should be imposed on Uber to screen its driver's background checks including the criminal record as well as the vehicle record. In addition to this, they must be provided proper training and education in relation to the driving and customer service, which in turn will be effective to manage the quality delivered for the services. Note that, these laws were implemented with objective to guarantee the suitability, quality, and safety Uber drivers. In addition to this, the new regulations must also ensure that the driver should possess the city permit to become a driver for the Uber Company (Rauch & Schleicher, 2015). It is the sole responsibility of state government Federal government and tax officers to regulate Uber and make it abide by the regulatory framework.

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