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Uber agrees to $20 million settlement with FTC over driver pay
Uber will pay the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) $20 million to settle charges that the ride-hailing service exaggerated the amount of money its drivers make in certain cities.
According to the commission, Uber claimed its drivers' median annual income in New York City was upwards of $90,000. In San Francisco, the FTC said, Uber claimed it was more than $74,000. But less than 10 percent of drivers in those cities made that much, the agency concluded.
"Many consumers sign up to drive for Uber, but they shouldn't be taken for a ride about their earnings potential or the cost of financing a car through Uber," Jessica Rich, the head of the FTC's consumer protection division, said in a statement. "This settlement will put millions of dollars back in Uber drivers' pockets."
Uber confirmed the settlement, saying that the company has "made many improvements to the driver experience."
"We're pleased to have reached an agreement with the FTC," an Uber spokeswoman said in a statement. "We've made many improvements to the driver experience over the last year and will continue to focus on ensuring that Uber is the best option for anyone looking to earn money on their own schedule."
The FTC also alleged that Uber claimed it would help its drivers secure affordable financing options for owning or leasing a car. Those rates, the commission said, were worse than financing options offered to consumers with similar credit scores.
In addition to the $20 million fine, the settlement also bars Uber from misrepresenting its drivers' income and other contract provisions.