Justice Department sues Uber over ‘wait time’ charges for those with disabilities

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(WKBN) – The Justice Department filed a lawsuit Wednesday against Uber and its policy of charging “wait time” fees to customers with disabilities, who may need more time getting into a car.

Uber began charging the fees for all customers in April 2016. Wait time fees start two minutes after the Uber car arrives for pickup and are charged until the car begins the trip.

The lawsuit states that Uber did not modify its wait time fee to accommodate those with disabilities such as those using a wheelchair, walker, or those who are blind, among other disabilities.

The department’s lawsuit alleges that, even when Uber is aware that a passenger’s need for additional time is clearly disability-based, Uber starts charging a wait time fee at the two-minute mark.   

The lawsuit asks the court to order Uber to stop the practice immediately and modify its wait times to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act. It also seeks monetary damages for those who have been subjected to what the Justice Department is calling “illegal wait time fees,” and a civil penalty.

The Justice Department is looking to speak to those with disabilities who have been affected by wait time fees. The department asks that they contact 833-591-0425 (toll-free), 202-305-6786, or send an email to Uber.Fee@usdoj.gov.

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